With advanced integration through new free trade agreements (FTAs) and policy reforms, an educated workforce and big consumer base, Vietnam is bestowed with excellent aspects to become an economic hub of Southeast Asia.
According to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, only 21 per cent of small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) in Vietnam are involved in the global value chain, which is much lower compared with the average of 46 per cent of other ASEAN countries.
Most of these SMEs are only involved in simple processes and downstream supply chain. Also, the input value of Vietnamese enterprises in the supply chain of foreign invested enterprises (FDI) is less than 27 per cent, the rest is from other FDI enterprises.
Thus, Vietnam aims to upgrade to a higher level in the global value chain, to strengthen links with FDI enterprises.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said: "We understand that as we move forward, other nations also do the same, so businesses must strive harder, be more innovative to narrow the gap in the region. Enterprise's success is the Government's success.”
He added: "Vietnam does not aspire to be the best in the global value chain but wants to be friend with the best.”
Speaking at the conference, President of the World Economic Forum (WEF), Borge Brende also said: "In the process of preparing for WEF ASEAN, we realized that despite the achievements Vietnam has not rested on laurels, yet the country has continued to move forward, making the necessary changes to prepare for the future."
"Vietnam's success can be a lesson for some countries struggling to cope with a slowdown," he said.
Brende said: "Vietnam has had reasonable policies to control public debt. After a period of high public debt, Vietnam has taken strong measures to limit it to a moderate level, in line with the size of the economy, ensuring financial sustainability."
At the same time in the context of the 4.0 industrial revolution, WEF President urged enterprises to use and apply more new technology.
"There will be new technology, new processes, new products and all of these efforts are expected to be motivators for our success in the future," he said.