Published on December 7, 2007
"Three years ago, investment in Vietnam [from Japan] was Bt1.6 billion. But the figure is up to Bt3.9 billion this year," Yoichi Kato, president of Jetro's Bangkok office, said yesterday.
The exodus started late last year when Thai politics turned chaotic, he said.
Some core industries including electronics and automobiles have pointed out that production costs in Vietnam are now much cheaper than here. The economy there has also been vibrant for years due to strong domestic demand.
The United Nations has noted that Vietnam is becoming of the world's best countries for investment along with China, Russia, Brazil, India and the United States.
Japanese companies are primarily concerned about political stability when making an investment decision, so they see Vietnam as a good place to go, Kato said.
Jetro has organised investment seminars in other countries such as Cambodia and Laos.
The Japan-Thai Economic Partnership Agreement, which recently went into effect, is expected to boost Japanese imports, particularly farm products, while tropical Thai fruits such as durian and mango are expected to penetrate the Japanese market.
Jetro is holding the Japan Food Fair 2007 in Bangkok from yesterday to Sunday.
"More than 40 Japanese food and agricultural companies are introducing their new products here while 10 local firms are joining the event," Kato said.