Vietnam, Cuba promote trade and investment cooperation

Friday, 12/05/2023 15:43
Many Vietnamese and Cuban businesses attended the forum to explore investment and cooperation opportunities in various fields, especially in agriculture and energy.
Leaders of Ho Chi Minh City and Cuba visit the booths at the forum. (Photo: SGGP)

On May 12, Ho Chi Minh City Investment and Trade Promotion Center (ITPC) organized a Vietnam-Cuba Trade and Investment Promotion Forum. The ceremony was attended by Ms. Ariadne Feo Labrada, Consul General of Cuba to Ho Chi Minh City.

Speaking at the opening of the forum, Vice Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Duong Anh Duc said that although Vietnam and Cuba are geographically distant, they have similarities in the cause of national construction and defense, aspirations and ideals, as well as the heroic traditions.

“Promoting bilateral trade and investment cooperation commensurate with political and diplomatic relations is a key task of the two countries and also the desire of many generations of the Vietnamese and Cuban people,” he aded.

Vietnam is currently Cuba's second largest Asian trading partner. In the period 2015-2020, bilateral trade turnover was about USD250-350 million. Regarding investment cooperation, Vietnam is currently Asia’s largest foreign investor in Cuba with 5 projects having been carried out, while Cuba has also implemented the project Labiofam Vietnam Co., Ltd. in the production of biological products in Vietnam.

Mr. Maury Hechavarris Bermudez, Deputy Minister of Agriculture of Cuba, acknowledged that the cooperation relationship between the two countries still has great potential. He affirmed that Cuba always accompanies foreign investors. Since 2014, Cuba passed a law on investment, with many special preferential policies, of which, in 8 initial years, foreign investors will not have to pay tax. Cuba also has the advantage of a prime location, political stability, and available infrastructure to help investors reduce investment costs, especially in the agricultural sector.

More specifically, Mr. Edisnel Gonzalez Valdes, General Director of Fernando Echenique Agricultural Grain Company, wishes to cooperate in rice production in the area where his company is assigned. Currently, the company is lacking fertilizers, agricultural machinery, and plant protection drugs. The advantage is that the production area is very large (more than 25,300ha), and the arable land is fertile and suitable for rice cultivation.

Similarly, Mr. Osmel Otero Rodriguez, General Director of Sur del Jibaro Agricultural Grain Company, also called for investment in the company's rice growing area of more than 35,000 hectares.

Meanwhile, with investment experience in Cuba since 1992, the Thai Binh Investment and Trade Joint Stock Company currently has 3 factories in Cuba with a total value of about USD50 million. It is a factory producing diapers and tampons, which currently meets about 70% of domestic consumption demand; one factory producing washing powder and detergent; and a solar park.

Mr. Tran Ngoc Thuan, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Thai Binh Company, said that at present, 100% of Cuban consumer goods are imported. With a population of 11 million people, the Cuban market is very suitable for Vietnamese small and medium enterprises to invest in manufacturing plants. Cuban businesses also give priority to buying domestically produced goods to replace imports, so investing in manufacturing plants in Cuba is an advantage.

Mr. Thuan also clearly analyzed other advantages and disadvantages and affirmed his willingness to cooperate and advise businesses to explore and invest in the Cuban market./.

Compiled by BTA