In an article published recently, the Dau tu (Investment) newspaper commented that capital flows from the US are expected to open up a new chapter in the country’s investment cooperation with Vietnam.
The paper reported that ahead of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to the US from May 29-31, Jabil Circuit, Inc., a major US technology corporation, commenced construction of a new manufacturing workshop at the Saigon Hi-tech Park (SHTP) in Ho Chi Minh City.
Jabil began operations at SHTP in September 2007, specializing in the production of electronics and equipment for information technology and telecommunications and with initial capital of only $30 million. In 2011, however, it decided to increase its investment to $100 million.
In 2015, Jabil once again announced an investment expansion in Vietnam, focusing on the field of high technology.
“Since we began operations in Vietnam ten years ago, we have been on a consistent growth trajectory,” Mr. Vijay Chinnasami, Senior Vice President of Electronic Manufacturing Services (EMS) at Jabil, was quoted by the paper as saying. “We are currently operating at maximum capacity and this expansion is central to our growth strategy. Besides positioning us well for future growth, this expansion also reflects our continued commitment to develop and invest in Vietnam.”
Jabil is among the US investors to commit to long-term operations in Vietnam. Other major US investment projects include the Ho Tram Strip, with a total registered capital of $4.2 billion being carried out in southern Ba Ria Vung Tau province.
Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung has also spoken of such names as Intel, GE, Boeing, Coca-Cola, Nike, Microsoft, Citi Group, P&G, and Mobil while highlighting the significant contributions of US investors to Vietnam’s renovation, integration, and economic development.
As at May 20 this year, the US had 838 investment projects worth over $10.2 billion in Vietnam, ranking it ninth among countries and territories investing in the country.
US giants such as Nike, Adidas, Intel, and Microchip plan to shift their production to Vietnam, while ExxonMobil - a major US oil and gas group - is preparing for the implementation of the Blue Whale project, which brings gas onshore, with committed capital of nearly $10 billion.
At recent workshops on Vietnam-US prospects in 2017 and subsequent years in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, a large number of US companies said they would increase their investment in Vietnam.
“We are working to find concrete ways to strengthen the bilateral trading relationship, including the possibility of a bilateral free trade agreement, in order to support economic growth in both countries,” said Ms. Tami Overby, Senior Vice President for Asia at the US Chamber of Commerce (AmCham).
Meanwhile, AmCham Executive Director Adam Sitkoff expressed his confidence in the upwards growth trend in trade and investment relations between Vietnam and the US. “AmCham supports a path towards a US-Vietnam free trade agreement, which would help increase bilateral trade and investment and which would create wealth and job opportunities for people in both countries,” he said.
Regarding the ongoing visit to the US by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Minister Dung, who is accompanying the PM, said it holds significant meaning in elevating the bilateral comprehensive partnership to new heights.
This is an excellent opportunity for Vietnam to boost trade and investment relations with the US, he said, adding that 80-90 Vietnamese businesses are accompanying the Prime Minister and seeking new cooperation agreements.
The two countries’ leaders are scheduled to hold talks to discuss measures to promote the bilateral comprehensive partnership in the future, especially in the fields of politics, external affairs, economics, and trade.
Vice President of AmCham Michael Kelly told Dau tu reporters that the US business community is very much looking forward to the PM’s visit.
“My experience suggests that the Vietnamese Government is committed to implementing reforms and supporting US and Vietnamese business operations,” he said. “I have received reassurances that there will be a level playing field for US investments in Vietnam as part of a mutually beneficial trade relationship.”