KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia is targeting to push its trade volume with Vietnam to US$15 billion (about RM60.6 billion) by next year.
Vietnam-Malaysia Business Association spokesperson Dinh Hai Yen said that for last year, Vietnam’s total export of various goods to Malaysia was US$3.81 billion, while its import from Malaysia was US$1.75 billion.
“Vietnam is the second biggest trade partner for Malaysia in Asean, while Malaysia is its fourth largest trade partner in the region, with 586 products traded between the two countries.
“For last year, Malaysia was the eighth biggest investor in Vietnam accounting for US$12.5 billion,” she said.
Dinh added that Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was keen to increase bilateral trade, with 12 per cent of it involving vegetables, flowers and fruits.
She added that Malaysia was one of Vietnam’s top 10 export markets for fruits, vegetables and flowers, accounting for US$45 million a year.
“There is great scope for the horticultural and floricultural industries for both nations,” said Dinh in conjunction with the ‘3rd HortEx Vietnam 2020’.
Dinh is also business development director of YCYV Sdn Bhd, the sales agency for the "3rd HortEx Vietnam 2020", which is jointly organised by Veas Co. Ltd of Vietnam, Nova Exhibitions B.V. of the Netherleands and China Great Wall International Exhibition Co. Ltd.
HortEx is an international exhibition and conference for horticultural and floricultural production and processing technology.
The event will be held at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Centre in Ho Chi Minh City on Feb 26-28 next year.
Dinh added that with Vietnam enjoying improved socio-political stability, her country was emerging as one of the most dynamic economies worldwide.
“Since 1991, Vietnam’s economic growth has averaged a stunning 7.5 per cent each year.
“Sixty per cent of Vietnam’s 92 million population is at a working age,” she said.
Dinh added that as the fastest growing economy in Asean, Vietnam’s middle and affluent class was expected to increase from 12 million in 2014, to 33 million by next year.
“Furthermore, the country is a market economy, a member of the World Trade Organisation and a party to multiple frameworks for international economic integration, including free trade agreements with partners both within and outside the region,” she said.
Vietnam’s export of fruits, vegetables and flowers have enjoyed strong growth in the past years, with an average rate of 26.5 per cent a year; from US$439 million in 2009 to US$4 billion last year.
The sector is expected to show further growth due to strong exports and a strong domestic demand.
“The Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Vietnam, which will go into effect as of next year, will give an additional boost to the horticulture and floriculture sector,” Dinh said.
"HortEx Vietnam 2019" hosted nearly 200 companies from 28 countries worldwide and welcomed 6,495 trade visitors.
For next year’s edition, 8,000 trade visitors are expected from 30 countries.
The exhibition and conference enables participants to meet key decision-makers, strengthen valuable contacts with customers and partners and explore the potential of an exciting growth market, according to Dinh.