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With an annual growth rate of between 25-30 percent, the plastics sector of Viet Nam is already ready for international economic integration, and is able to compete with its rivals in both regional and international markets, according to experts. The plastics sector's turnover has rapidly increased over recent years. In 2006, its export revenue jumped to US$478 million from US$100 million five years ago. Particularly, the value of plastic package and wrapping products used for export products reaches hundreds of million USD each year.


Made-in-Viet Nam plastic products have made a foothold in many regional and international markets like Cambodia, Laos, the US, the European Union, and particularly Japan. Of the products, package and wrapping products alone, which are now available at 41 countries and territories around the world, account for 80 percent of the total export value of the sector.


Alongside the mentioned traditional markets, Vietnamese businesses are also aiming towards promising ones like China, India, Russia, Eastern Europe and Africa.


In the domestic market, Vietnamese plastic products are widely used by almost all sectors, including industry, agriculture, transport, seafood, construction, electricity and electronics. High-quality products like oil pipelines or those used for automobiles and computers are successfully produced by local businesses.


According to the Viet Nam Plastic Association, the abolishment of tariffs when Viet Nam officially becomes a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) will generate a greater opportunity for the plastics sector in export and investment attraction. The move would create favourable conditions for the sector to reach the target of fetching US$1.3 million from export by 2010.


Plastic ware production has become appealing to international investors, particularly Japanese businesses. With the aim of seizing this opportunity and expanding the sector's export market, the association has worked out various measures, focusing on encouraging businesses to invest in plants specialising in producing materials, semi-products, chemicals and equipment, and to apply hi-tech and state-of-the-art equipment.


The association will also concentrate on speeding up the equitisation of state-owned enterprises in a bid to mobilise capitals from every economic sector. Additionally, it points to the need for local businesses to coordinate to increase capital and technology, pay more attention to trademark and products advertising, and penetrate into retail networks of international markets by attending exhibitions, fairs and trade promotion activities.


Viet Nam is currently home to 800 plastic ware producers, of whom 80 percent are operating in Ho Chi Minh City. Major products include wrapping, consumer products, construction products and hi-tech plastic products.

Source: VN Agency (2007)


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