Vietnamese exports to the Japanese market have surged as Japanese demands have increase after the earthquake and tsunami disaster and many trade barriers have been reduced.
Le Thi Thanh Lam, deputy CEO of Saigon Food, said thanks to increasing demands from Japan after the disaster, Saigon Food’s exports to this market from April to July were 10 percent higher than the same period last year.
The Japanese market accounts for 70 percent of Saigon Food’s exports, buying 350 tonnes of seafood and yielding a turnover of $1 million every year for the company, Lam said.
Nguyen Minh Viet, CEO of the HCM City-based software company Greensun Asoft, said his company has received a large number of orders from Japan since early June.
He predicted the company’s growth would rise by three to four times year-on-year.
Other commodities including textile and garments, wood products, power cables, equipments and machinery, rice and crude oil have also been exported to Japan in greater quantities.
Particularly, the export turnover of the textile and garment sector rose by 20 percent thanks to the positive impacts of the Japan – Asean Free Trade Agreement and the Vietnam – Japan Economic Partnership Agreement.
Yet, even though exports to Japan have increased, many Vietnamese businesses said it is not easy to enter the world’s third largest economy.
Cao Tien Vi, chair of Saigon Paper Corporation, said the Japanese are willing to negotiate prices but never quality.
He said Japanese importers would refuse to accept a whole batch if one unit has the smallest mistake and would scrutinise the next batch very carefully.
Many trade experts thus advised Vietnamese businesses to focus on product quality to win trust from Japanese partners.
According to the HCM City Investment and Trade Promotion Centre, Vietnamese exporters have yet to fully understand the Japanese market, which is reflected in the modest presence of Vietnamese products at Tokyo supermarkets.
The centre has thus promised to boost trade promotion and help the processed food and handicraft sectors to enter the Japanese market in the future.