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Exporters feel excited about widened door to Japanese marketVietnamese enterprises have geared up to prepare to boost their exports to the Japanese market – the market which is believed to open more widely after the official visit by the newly elected Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia have been chosen as the three first legs of the first official trip abroad of Shinzo Abe who has just taken the office as the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister has affirmed that Japan always attach much importance and go with the countries which play the role as the center of the development in the 21st century. The event has animated Vietnamese enterprises, which believe they would have more opportunities to export their products to Japan, and the Japanese business circle in Vietnam.

Pham Xuan Hong, General Director of the Saigon 3 Garment Company, said 60 percent of his products has been exported to Japan.

Japan was the third biggest export market for Vietnamese textile and garment exporters, after the US and the EU. However, the garments exports to Europe and Japan were the same in 2012. In that year, the exports to Japan increased by 10 percent, while the exports to the US did not increase and the exports to Europe decreased.

Vietnamese garment exporters now see Japan a very attractive market, especially when the prices of exports to Japan keep stable, while the export prices to the US and Europe have decreased.

Hong said he can see bigger opportunities for Vietnamese garments to go to the Japanese market. While the consumption level in Japan has increased again, the Chinese exports to Japan have decreased. Japanese importers now tend to seek other supply sources, including Vietnam.

Tran Tien Nam, Director of the Quang Minh Fine Arts and Handicrafts Company in the southern province of Binh Duong, which has been exporting products to Japan over the last 15 years, has noted that the improved relation between Vietnam and Japan would pave the way for more Vietnamese products to penetrate the Japanese market.

Nam also mentioned the Vietnam – Japan Economic Partnership Agreement as a big advantage of Vietnamese enterprises to compete with other exporters when bringing goods to the Japanese market.

Especially, Nam believes that the Vietnamese enterprises which have been exporting products to Japan would have bigger opportunities than other enterprises, because Japanese companies always have high faithfulness when doing business with partners.

Hiroshi Sakamoto, Chair of the The Sense of Life, an expert in interior decoration products of AJC, a trade, investment and tourism promotion, said in mind of Japanese enterprises, the Japanese economy would not be able to develop if it does not cooperate with other countries, including Vietnam.

He said Vietnamese enterprises should build up reasonable strategies to penetrate the Japanese market. The goods to be exported to Japan should have the pricing strategies which are suitable to the adjusted spending levels of the Japanese consumers.

There have been some changes in the consumption habit of Japanese people. The number of people buying goods simply because of the low prices has decreased, while the number of people buying goods because of the high quality of products has increased.

Hong and Nam both say Japanese importers are always demanding, but they are ready to cooperate and share difficulties with manufacturers. Especially, Vietnamese enterprises can enjoy the tariff preferences if using materials from Japan and Asean countries.


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