Thailand: Long-term Investors in Vietnam Market

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Thailand is one of the few investors involving in a lot of industries in Vietnam, they set up business in Vietnam for years and this trend has not shown signs of decline.

Thailand was one of the first foreign investors came to Vietnam in 1992. To date, Thai investors have committed to invest in Vietnam 468 projects with a total registered capital of 8 billion USD, ranked 10th among countries and territories investing in Vietnam. Thai investors have poured capital into many sectors of Vietnam’s economy, from processing industry to agriculture, wholesale and retail…

After more than 25 years of presence in Vietnam, Thais have quietly acquired BigC, Metro, Nguyen Kim, Vinamilk, Prime… The chain of wholesale and retail stores of Thai people has spread throughout Vietnam. Not many foreign investors in Vietnam can do that.

With a large investment scale, it can be said that Thailand is the leading investment partner of Vietnam. Meanwhile, in ASEAN, Thailand is Vietnam’s largest trading partner, while Vietnam is Thailand’s second largest export partner, with total bilateral trade in 2016 reached 12.5 billion USD. Of which, Vietnam exports to Thailand reached 3.7 billion USD. In the first half of 2017, total two-way trade turnover reached nearly 7 billion USD, increase by over 22% over the same period last year. The two sides set a target to bring two-way trade turnover to 20 billion USD by 2020.

However, Vietnam and Thailand are also direct “competitors” in both competition to attract foreign investment and export goods. There are a lot of Thai exports that are similar to Vietnam’s exports, in which rice is one of the typical items.

In terms of investment attraction, Thailand has long been a leading investment destination in the region and Vietnam is competing directly with this market. In recent years, many Korean and Japanese investors, including LG, have decided to move production sites from Thailand to Vietnam. According to a report released by PwC, Vietnam has surpassed both Thailand and Malaysia in terms of new FDI inflows. Even PwC says that overtaking Thailand and Malaysia, Vietnam is at a “booming point” in the development process, thanks to a series of trade agreements being signed and an increasingly transparent and open business environment.

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