American investment in Vietnam: $10 billion in value, with other benefits
$10.2 billion is the total value of US foreign direct investment (FDI) in Vietnam, but the figure does not represent everything the US contributes.
General Electric (GE) initially focused on selling valuable products, such as aircraft engines, turbines for wind power plants and medical equipment, worth hundreds of millions of dollars or $1 billion a year.
Two years ago, GE still thought Vietnam was just a market to sell products, and it did not appreciate the stability of Vietnam’s policies and the transparency of the investment environment.
However, during the recent visit to the US by Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, GE Power’s CEO said Vietnam is an attractive investment destination.
Vu Tu Thanh, SE Asia deputy director of the US-ASEAN Business Council, said the Vietnamese market, in the eyes of GE, has been upgraded to a new level.
In 2010, GE invested $61 million in a plant that makes wind power turbines in Hai Phong City, and three years later, it raised investment capital to $100 million.
The number of workers at the plant has increased from 600 to 2,500. Most recently, GE has decided to join forces with PetroVietnam to develop a gas power plant in the central region.
GE’s President, in his latest visit to Vietnam in April, revealed GE’s long-term investment plan in Vietnam, saying that GE is eyeing the energy, aviation and healthcare sectors.
“$100 million is a small figure for a corporation with revenue equal to Vietnam’s total GDP and $100 million is nothing compared with the total US FDI value of $10.2 billion. However, this is an important exploration step,” Thanh said.
Not only GE, but other US large corporations have been flocking to Vietnam in the last half year, despite the demise of TPP, considered an important link for the US and Vietnam.
In March 2017, a group of representatives from 29 US businesses came to Vietnam to seek business opportunities in Vietnam. These included well-known names such as Google, Uber, Apple, Amway, Coca-Cola, Exxon Mobil, Ford, General Motors, MasterCard and Visa.
During the Vietnamese PM’s visit, about 20 cooperation agreements and MOUs between Vietnamese and US businesses were signed with the total value of $15 billion. Most of them were agreements on Vietnam’s equipment imports from the US. With Vietnam’s high demand for machinery from the US, the US trade deficit of $30 billion in trade with Vietnam will probably be reduced.
Pham Huyen, VNN