The Republic of Korea (RoK) poured US$2.32 billion in Vietnam in the first four months of 2018, making up nearly 30% of the inflow of investment in the Southeast Asian country.
With the figure, the RoK topped the list of 82 countries and territories investing in Vietnam in the period, according to the Foreign Investment Agency (FIA) under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.
Notably, some large-scale projects of the RoK registered to increase capital in the January – April period.
For example, LG Innotek proposed adding US$501 million to its camera module production project at Trang Due industrial park in the northern port city of Hai Phong, raising the total registered capital to US$1.05 billion.
|Workers at a Korea-invested mobile phone spare part manufacturing factory in Vietnam's northern province of Thai Nguyen.
Meanwhile, Kefico Vietnam Co. Ltd. registered to raise capital by US$120 million for its project in the northern province of Hai Duong, which specializes in manufacturing components and accessories for motored vehicles.
Recently, the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) has revealed its plan to move its main headquarters in Southeast Asia from Singapore to Hanoi to support Korean firms doing business in the fast growing market.
KOTRA said the decision was made in consideration of the growing number of Korean companies that are based in Vietnam or that plan to invest in the Southeast Asian nation.
According to KOTRA, bilateral trade between Vietnam and the RoK reached US$63.9 billion in 2017. Vietnam is now the fourth largest trading partner of the RoK while the country is Vietnam's second-largest.
The agency also plans to open new business centres in Ahmedabad, an industrial city in western India, and in Da Nang, a commercial hub in Vietnam’s central region.
KOTRA will expand business centres in the promising markets to keep up with the changing trade environment, said CEO Kwon Pyung-oh.
At a recent meeting between Vietnamese and Korean businesses in Hanoi, many RoK firms highly evaluated Vietnam’s investment environment and investment incentives.
Gunjae Kim, chairman of the RoK’s Hwasung veterinary medicine company, said a lot of RoK firms operating in various fields have made inroads into Vietnam. He hailed Vietnam’s investment attraction policies with improvements in the business climate.
At present, Hwasung has not planned to open a manufacturing factory in Vietnam, but it wants to seek trade opportunities and promote import-export activities with Vietnamese businesses, he said.