Five years after joining the WTO, Vietnam’s GDP per capita reached US$1,300, and its export market have been expanded to 149 WTO economies.
Vietnam’s export turnover last year, over US$96 billion, was double 2007’s figure.
The information was unveiled at a seminar on March 9 to discuss the competitiveness of Vietnamese businesses after five years in the WTO.
The event was co-organized by the Communist Review and the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
According to economists, after five years of WTO membership, the number of enterprises has increased 2.3 times and 7.3 times in registered capital compared to 2007. Many local businesses have affirmed their foothold in regional and international markets by penetrating demanding markets. As of 2010, Vietnam has had 19 traditional markets with export turnover reaching more than US$1 billion.
Export turnover grew by more than 19 percent on average from 2007 to 2011 compared to 18 percent before Vietnam's entry to the largest trade organization.
Economists also agreed that after WTO admis;sion, Vietnamese businesses’ competitiveness has improved remarkably. However, they still reveal weaknesses such as small- scale operation, low capacity of applying science and technology, and limited market share. Many businesses have failed to work out a competitive strategy to affirm their prestige and quality in the region and the world.
Cao Sy Kiem, President of the Vietnam Association of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), said that although SMEs have developed rapidly, they have not been fully equipped with capital sources, advanced technology, highly-skilled human resources and business administration experience, putting them in a fix to ensure the quality of product design and competitive prices, even in the domestic market.
To improve the competitive edge of SOEs in the future, it is necessary to restructure state owned enterprises (SOEs) by eradicating weak enterprises, strengthening inspection and training qualified business administration managers.