Dubai Exports Links UAE Exporters and SMEs to Strategic Industry Sectors in Vietnam and Cambodia

Press release
Published December 20th, 2018 - 07:21 GMT
Badr Abbas, SVP - Commercial Operations for Far East, Emirates
Badr Abbas, SVP - Commercial Operations for Far East, Emirates

Dubai Exports, the export promotion agency of the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Dubai, recently concluded a successful a trade mission to Vietnam and an official visit to Cambodia as part of connecting the UAE industry to promising markets worldwide. The visit, which was the second to Vietnam and first to Cambodia for Dubai Exports, was meant to introduce UAE firms, particularly SMEs, to the impressive growth and demand in the two countries, and particularly to Vietnam’s advantages as an eastern gateway.

Vietnam's gross domestic product (GDP) rose 7.1% in the first half of this year, compared with the same period of 2017. The growth is due to strong industrial activity and strong external demand. The World Bank estimated GDP growth for 2018 in Vietnam at 6.8%, which is expected to continue until 2020. Economic reforms, begun in 1986, accelerated growth, created more jobs, improved income Per capita, while industrial activity continued to generate strong demand.

Mohammed Al Kamali, Deputy CEO of Dubai Exports, stated that the latest mission sought to build on the success the previous year’s visit with a much larger delegation. “Our experience shows that as the Vietnamese economy grows the country’s appetite for imports has increased, creating favourable conditions for UAE companies. From fast moving consumer goods to innovative digital technologies, each of the focus areas in our latest mission reflected the capabilities the UAE industry has remarkably built in recent years as well as the existing demand in Vietnam.”

Al Kamali added that reforms have further opened up Vietnam’s dominant trade sector where Dubai Exports foresees significant opportunities for UAE exports. “The average applied tariff rate in Vietnam is 3.1% and non-tariff barriers are next to nil. Economic growth has created one of the fastest developing middle class in the region, which is estimated to exceed 30 million in a total population of 90 million.”

Commenting on Cambodia, Al Kamali said trade with the country will not only help UAE exporters to expand in Asia but also reinforce Dubai as a re-export hub to diverse markets, most notably Africa. “We are working to connect companies in Dubai and the UAE to Cambodia and with Emirates now flying there, business owners and traders have improved connectivity and opportunities for success."

Badr Abbas, SVP - Commercial Operations for Far East, Emirates said, “We are pleased to support the UAE’s efforts in boosting trade with both Vietnam and Cambodia, and to play a key role in enhancing trade links between the three markets. Vietnam and Cambodia are important markets for Emirates and over the past five years the trade we have enabled with both countries has collectively totalled 200,000 tonnes, comprising exports and imports. Our cargo division’s operations has supported exports for Vietnam and Cambodia by providing capacity and connectivity to the rest of the world through our freighters and passenger flights.”

Abbas added that the two daily flights of Emirates to Vietnam’s key business hubs, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, in addition to a daily flight to the Cambodian city of Phnom Penh, provide direct access for business and corporate travellers from Dubai and vice versa.

Vietnam is one of Asia’s top five retail markets, and consumer goods successfully exported by the UAE today are high in demand among the tech-savvy young Vietnamese whose median age is as low as 29. Half of the Vietnamese population has Internet access and the tech sector is expected to contribute to 10% of the country’s GDP by 2020.

The Dubai Exports mission was supported by Trade Hub, a UAE-Vietnam joint initiative that seeks to capitalise on digital trade, particularly in view of Ho Chi Minh City, the most populous city in Vietnam, being referred to as Asia’s Silicon Valley due to the high number of tech accelerators and firms working in technologies such as blockchain, fin-tech and health-tech.

Sultan Lootah, CEO of Trade Hub, commented: “Our platform offers SMEs in the UAE as well as Vietnam to trade with two simple clicks of a mouse. Trade Hub allows buyers and sellers to connect using their own search criteria as well as artificial intelligence. Once a sale is agreed the whole process, including logistics, certification and payment, is completed on the platform.”

The delegation also explored the possibilities of leveraging Vietnam as a gateway to export to neighbouring countries. A member of ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations), which is the world’s seventh largest economy with a combined GDP of almost US$ 3 trillion and predicted to be the fourth largest by 2050, Vietnam is an efficient link to smaller but important regional economies.

Background Information

Dubai Export Development Corporation

Dubai Exports strives to ensure the success of the exports sector in Dubai and the UAE, providing constant guidance, advice and practical support to both overseas buyers and suppliers.We develop long-term growth strategies to help businesses expand and maximise their opportunities given by Dubai’s unique position as a natural trade gateway between the East and the West.

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