World Economic Forum Grooms Vietnam as Alternative to China

World Economic Forum
Vietnam's Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc speaks at the Vietnam Bussiness Summit as part of the World Economic Forum on ASEAN at the National Convention Center in Hanoi, Vietnam September 13, 2018.
(Photo: REUTERS/Kham)

This week, Vietnam hosted the World Economic Forum. On this expansive global stage, Vietnam was able to project itself as an interesting alternative to China's current domination of the world production market.

One particular point that Vietnam highlighted is the fact that the country can ship exports from up and coming economies to China or the United States without the possibility of further expanding the already devastating effects of the China-U.S. trade war. Many foreign investors have seen Vietnam as such, a refreshing alternative to China's dominance in the Asian trade ecology.

Baker McKenzie partner Frederick Burke pointed out that Vietnam used the massive scope of the World Economic Forum as a stage to impress numerous multination companies, some of which have not visited the country for decades. This list of these companies is quite impressive.

The annual World Economic Forum in Vietnam was attended by about 1,000 delegates. The main focus of the event revolves around one particular topic, Vietnam's strategic economic location in Southeast Asia.

It was mentioned during one of the discussions that Vietnam is looking for foreign investment, especially in export manufacturing. This particular industry will play a vital role in improving the county's booming economy. Some observers said that export manufacturing will help keep the country's economy grow 6 to 7 percent.

With this strategic economic game plan, some market experts are saying that it will definitely make an impression on foreign investors. The reason behind this is quite simple. By tapping Vietnam, manufacturers and investors can essentially ship goods and products both to China and the United States without getting embroiled in the bitter trade war between two of the world's biggest economies.

While Vietnam's possibility as a fresh alternative to China was heavily discussed during the forum, the recent World Economic Forum has also touched on several vital topics. Among the topics discussed were the region's aging population, high-tech agriculture, and Internet economy.

The World Economic Forum was attended by several top officials representing countries within the region. Among these countries are Myanmar, Malaysia, Laos, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka. The presence of these many countries during the forum is a sign of the growing cooperation between neighbors in the region.

The World Economic Forum has been in existence for 47 years. The forum essentially advocates the cooperation between governments and the private sectors. Many have considered the forum as a pro-trade organization.

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