Illustrative photo. (Source: VNA)

The conference was co-hosted by the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade), the Vietnam Trade Office in the US in partnership with Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America (FDRA), the Vietnam Leather, Footwear and Handbag Association (Lefaso), and USAID Linkages for Small and Medium Enterprises (LinkSME), to boost the export of footwear - one of Vietnam’s main foreign currency earners - to the US.

It was the first video conference ever held bringing Vietnam’s footwear sector and a foreign market together.

As both countries gradually reopen their economies, the conference and its business matching session provided a platform for Vietnamese firms and US importers to learn about each other’s needs and capacity, seek deals, and promote trade in the “new normal”.

The event presented Vietnamese firms with the latest updates on the US’s footwear market and how it is being affected by COVID-19. US experts also advised Vietnamese footwear makers on specific market segments they should focus on and how to improve competitiveness and properly access the US market.

The conference also offered Vietnamese companies a chance to discuss the challenges facing them in exporting footwear to the US.

Vietnam exported 18.3 billion USD worth of footwear products in total last year, up 12.8 percent against 2018. The US remained Vietnam’s largest footwear market, buying 6.65 billion USD, a year-on-year increase of 14.2 percent.

Shipments of footwear to the US grew 10 percent year-on-year to 1.56 billion USD in the first quarter of this year./.

CPV/VNA