Mr. Bui Xuan Khu, Standing Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Industry talked with Ninh Kieu from Vietnam Economic Times about the preparation of Vietnam industry for the international integration
The new year 2005 is coming. What has Vietnam industry been doing to prepare for international integration?
Industry as well as key products has been prepared for integration for the past years. However there are still many challenges. Most of the industrial products of Vietnam are assembled because Vietnam lacks materials for industrial production. That’s why the added value of products is low. In addition, there are still weaknesses in brand and competitiveness. Vietnam industry needs to try its bests to address those shortcomings for long-term benefits otherwise it will face so many drawbacks in the integration process.
The Party, the State and the Government have had many decrees, guidelines and conferences on this issue. The Ministry of Trade also has had strategies and plans for integration.
Can you be more specific?
The State and the Ministry of Industry should set specific criteria and roadmap for enterprises in the integration process. Businesses also need further endeavors.
First of all, we need to reduce costs and apply more modern technology. We should take advantage of integration to sell our products in the regional and international markets.
Our competitive products for exports are textile and garment, footwear, handicrafts, processed food, coal, oil, electricity, cable and wooden furniture.
The Ministry plans to modernize and invest more in those key products. For products with lower export turnover like equipment packages, steel and heavy industry products, if we pay more attention to them, the export turnover can increase.
For the last group with weak competitiveness products, we will invest in the products which are material for domestic industrial production.
What is the rule of the development of those three groups of product?
As the market for industrial products is fluctuated all the time, we need to project production based on regional and international demand and supply. In addition, we need invest more in new products which represent high market shares in the region and the world.
Vietnam’s agricultural products like rice, cashew and pepper are famous. However, we have not got any industrial product in high rank. For example, Vietnam textile and clothing are fine but rank only the 10th in the world market.
What about the restructure of enterprises?
The Ministry is preparing for development strategy of industry in the phase 2006-2015 and 2016-2025.
We are making our industry more flexible and effective.
State-run enterprises are being changed into joint-venture, limited and mother & son companies. We develop private enterprises and give priority to foreign investment. Local industry is also attached attention.
Vietnam Economic Review - (16/11/2004)