(Socialist Republic of Vietnam)

Vietnamese flag

Nominally still a socialist republic; Vietnam followed China’s lead in reforming its economy, taking a very similar gradualist approach with its Doi Moi renovation policy, initiated in 1986.

Twenty five years later, it has become one of the most exciting places to do business in the region, offering a tremendous dynamic workforce and a great selection of business opportunities from production and sourcing to direct investment.

However, like China, its reforms are incomplete and a substantial part of its economy continues to be comprised of the activities of largely unproductive state-owned enterprises. This has created a misallocation of financial resources which undermines the development of its private sector on one hand, and threatens the creditworthiness of the country of the other.

A net importer of machinery tools, parts, steel, fabrics and plastics, Vietnam has suffered from a negative balance of trade for the past two decades, which was recently amplified by the global financial crisis of 2008-9 which severely hit its textile and clothing export sector. Combined with the effects of global inflationary pressures, this has lead to one of the highest level of inflation in the region and it is unclear when the country will be able to recover from this.

Opportunities abound in many sectors including manufacturing, construction, finance, education, retail and tourism. There is also increasing demand for high-tech goods and service from Western countries.


Population: c. 90,550,000
Capital City: Hanoi
Government: Socialist Republic, Single Party State
Languages: Vietnamese
GDP per capita (PPP): $3,100
Growth Rate: 5%-8% per annum


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