Vietnamese business forum opens in Europe

(VOV) - More than 200 overseas Vietnamese businesses from 12 countries gathered at a forum in Prague, the Czech Republic, on October 27.

The event, the sixth of its kind held in Europe, focused on developing retail networks, bars and restaurants, and services to help the overseas Vietnamese community stabilize their lives and achieve sustainable development in their resident countries.

Delegates at the forum highlighted business opportunities available in the face of the global financial crisis.

Former State Vice President Truong My Hoa stressed the need to create close links among businesses, especially during the current economic difficulties. Enterprises should propose measures to help the State adjust mechanisms and policies to facilitate business operations, she said.

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Most participants agreed that Vietnamese businesses have not yet developed effective retail networks in overseas markets. Though many Vietnamese businesses have secured a firm foothold in Eastern Europe, they have been strongly impacted by the Euro zone crisis because many of them are wholesale enterprises. Vietnamese retail shops operate separately in Western Europe.

Hoang Manh Hue, Chairman of the Union of Vietnamese Businesses Associations in Europe, said that many trade centres are being built in Europe, but the main focus is not on promoting retail networks, which can diversify their business operations. Vietnamese enterprises need to cooperate with foreign partners in their resident countries to overcome difficulties and increase their effectiveness, he added.

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Some delegates suggested that Vietnamese businesses set up retail shops in remote areas where large European firms usually do not have a presence.

Tran Dang Chung, a representative from the Russian Business Association, said retail venues in overseas markets will help expand the distribution networks of local businesses and limit unhealthy competition.

On this occasion, former Vice State President Truong My Hoa, who is also Chairwoman of the Vu A Dinh Scholarship Fund, introduced a new scholarship program called “For Truong Sa Students” and called for support from overseas Vietnamese businesses.