Malaysian companies have been urged to take advantage of business opportunities in Vietnam and Cambodia, considering that both countries offered investors cheaper labour costs and abundant raw materials.
Making this call, Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) vice president and chair for Business Committee, Datuk Francis Huang said that there was great potential for further bilateral relations with the two countries, especially in economic, investment and trading.
“As Asean countries, Vietnam and Cambodia offer ample opportunities for Malaysian investors to intensify trade, joint venture and other forms of commercial collaborations,” he told reporters after a seminar on “Doing Business in Vietnam and Cambodia”, here Monday.
The seminar, which was organised by FMM aimed to update Malaysian investors on the investment opportunities and investment climate in Vietnam and Cambodia.
It also provided information on investment environment, taxation regime and legal framework in both the countries.
The seminar was also organised in preparation for the trade and investment mission to Vietnam and Cambodia to be jointly organised by FMM and Singapore Manufacturers’ Federation (SMa) from May 9 to 14 this year.
Huang said opportunities for investment in Cambodia were also considerable, as the country needed large-scale infrastructure development to support its efforts at a private sector-led economic growth.
The investment potential sectors in Cambodia included agro-business, light and medium industries, tourism and related activities, engineering, construction and public works and also real estate, he said.
As for Vietnam, he said that the country encouraged investment in all business areas such as electric and electronic, information and telecommunications, construction, agricultural, property & infrastructure development and power generation.
Meanwhile, Vietnam’s general director for Southern Foreign Investment Centre Ministry of Planning and Investment, Dr Pham Hong Ky said the country has set a proper and clear set of regulations and procedures regarding trade and foreign investment in a move to attract more foreign investors. “Several far reaching initiatives were taken in this regard such as no import duties for capital equipment & for export goods, no value added tax on imported capital equipment, export & re-exported goods and no tax on profit repatriated by companies in industrial parks,” he said.
On another note, Investment Advisor to the deputy prime minister of Cambodia, Tep Rithivit said the construction and service industries could be the first sectors to take advantage of the country’s move to boost its tourism sector to aid its economic recovery.
Towards this end, he said the country was now keen to have Malaysian expertise to develop its industries.
Foreign investors especially from Malaysia would be able to help spur Cambodia’s economic growth and provide jobs to its people, he said.
Over the past five years, Malaysian investments in Cambodia have come to US$41 million (RM155.8 million). “This number is good but we can do better,” he added.