If Vietnamese businesses optimize the material sources they have and make the best use of trade promotion activities, their export earnings can surpass USD 8 billion.

According to Huynh Van Hanh, Vice President of the Handicraft and Wood Industry Association of Ho Chi Minh City, in the past 15 years, the wood industry has maintained the growth rate of 8-15 percent a year despite world economic fluctuation.

The world’s wooden interior décor market is predicted to grow 3.5 percent in 2018.

The biggest issue of the wood processing enterprises in Vietnam is they are focusing on a market section with low added value, mostly concentrating on outsourcing for foreign clients.

To further develop the domestic wood sector, the businesses should pay attention to a higher target of selling abroad the whole space of high-end interior décor instead of doing outwork and selling separate products.

Meanwhile, the Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association (VIFORES) asserted that it is necessary to make full use of domestic material sources to create a breakthrough for the sector.

Statistics showed that Vietnam has more than 3 million hectares of acacia with an output of 150 cubic meters of wood in one hectare per year. If exploiting only a half of the total area, Vietnam will have 22.5 million cubic meters of wood a year, meeting the material demand of the whole sector for both domestic and foreign markets.

Especially, acacia wood is much cheaper than imported wood, which will help facilitate a closed production chain for made-in-Vietnam wooden products.

Along with optimizing material sources, trade promotion activities should also be strengthened to help domestic increase sales.

Hanh said that currently, trade fairs and exhibitions are considered the most economic and effective method of promotion. Therefore, in 2018, HAWA has informed its members of a number of events abroad and support them in joining the events to seek partners and broaden markets.

However, Hanh said that exhibitions in the country have drawn an increasing number of enterprises, especially small ones, as they would know the number of deals they secure immediately.

He noted that the Vietnam International Furniture and Home Accessories Fair (VIFA Expo) 2018 attracted 4,528 firms, while the 2017 event gathered only 2,000. Transactions at the event also increased.

Besides traditional trade promotion, digital marketing is popular in many countries such as the US, Germany, Italy and China. However, it is hard to find Vietnamese wooden décor firms on the Internet as the Vietnamese firms have yet to efficiently exploit this method.

Source: VNA