(VOV) – Morocco is rapidly becoming an important player in the North African market, with its proximity making it attractive to Vietnamese businesses, which can use it as a hub for their African sales and operations.
Though trade between Vietnam and Morocco has been robustly growing over recent years, experts at a recent business forum in Hanoi suggested it has not matched with its full potential.
Huge export surplus
In 2014 exports of businesses operating in Vietnam to Morocco rose sharply by 48% on-year to US$148 million.
Vietnam mainly shipped telephones and components, coffee, seafood, computers, electronics and components, garments, fibre, footwear, fishing nets, chemical and pepper to Morocco.
The country’s imports remained modest, reaching just US$8.7 million resulting in a US$139.3 million trade surplus. Imports consisted principally of computers, pharmaceuticals, DAP fertiliser, and raw materials for the garment and footwear industry.
Speaking at the forum, Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Tran Tuan Anh said the surplus is the result of domestic businesses being more proactive in their efforts to engage in business in Morocco and a more aggressive advertising campaign.
The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) has led the way in advancing the nation’s marketing efforts and should be applauded for their hard work, Anh said.
In addition, the composition of exports has changed for the better. The country shipped fewer unprocessed commodities such as coffee, pepper, and coconut rice and turned to exporting higher value added items such as computers, telephones, garment and footwear.
In addition, Vietnamese rice has become a staple of Moroccan households.
More export opportunities for both countries
The Africa, West Asia and South Asia Market Department in turn said that the North African nation is the perfect location for which Vietnamese businesses can use as a springboard to launch into both North-West Africa and the EU.
For his part, Mohamed Abbou, minister delegate to the Minister of Industry, Trade, Investment and the Digital Economy of Morocco said Morocco is rapidly transforming into a promising export market for Vietnam businesses.
Moroccan businesses are fixated on boosting cooperation with Vietnamese partners in the fields of agriculture, seafood, metallurgy, engineering, and construction materials, among other fields, Abbou said.
However, businesses still face a number of hurdles to overcome such as the far geographic distance, lack of market information, and differences in business customs, and languages, said the Vietnam Trade Office in Morocco.
A representative from the Hanoi Trade Corporation (Hapro) – an exporter to Morocco – added that businesses must set up representative offices and use local agents or distributors if they want to gain a firm foothold in the market.
Mohamed Abbou revealed that there are plenty of opportunities for the two countries’ businesses to foster much higher levels of expanded cooperation.
Morocco has been speeding up reform and has morphed into one of most advanced countries in Africa he said adding that, proposed incentive policies would open up more opportunities for Vietnam businesses.
They would allow for businesses to invest in industrial zones or free trade areas and better access neighbouring markets, Abbou added.
The Moroccan Government has pledged to create a favourable business climate conducive to both sides’ business communities, Abbou said.
To boost exports to Morocco, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will update local businesses with market information, carry out more advertising campaigns in the country and layout a development through 2020, Deputy Minister Tuan Anh said.
Moreover, the ministry will assist businesses in setting up subsidiaries and rice storage warehouses in key markets like Cameroon, Angola, and Mozambique, Anh assured.
A cooperation memorandum of understanding (MoU signed by the Morocco’s export promotion agency and the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade) evidences the strong determination of both sides to elevate bilateral trade value in the time ahead, Anh underscored.
Đăng ký: VietNam News