Vietnam’s shipping sector is still facing multiple barriers to joining the global supply chain, said international experts at a conference in Hanoi last week.
At the conference, Jonathan Beard, managing director of Hong Kong-based GHK, warned that it was difficult for Vietnam to become a maritime country despite having a coastline of 3,260 kilometers and being in the middle of international sea lanes.
According to Beard, seaports in the nation’s northern region are still small, so they cannot keep abreast of the fast development of the region as well as of China’s southwest region. He proposed the government develop some large seaports to pave the way for the northern region to grow.
World Bank expert Pham Anh Duc said the e-customs model should be boosted to facilitate export and import operations.
Vietnam ranks 53rd among 155 countries on the 2012 Logistics Performance Index (LPI) of the World Bank. The LPI was developed based on criteria such as infrastructure facilities, international shipments, shipping capacity and customs.
With the 2012 LPI, some criteria of Vietnam have been much improved, Duc said. However, the country has two big weaknesses – lack of warehouses and poor management services, he added.
The logistics sector accounts for 18-24 percent of Vietnam’s GDP, and this figure is much higher than in China, the EU and the US
An efficient supply chain is important to enterprises and Vietnam’s economic development, according to experts at the conference.