The US and Japan accounted for 53.5 per cent of Vietnam’s garment and textile sector’s export turnover last year. To meet its revenue target of $30 billion from exports in 2017, the sector will have to increase shipments to the US and Japan and maintain an export growth of six per cent in the two markets.
In 2016, Vietnam’s apparel market performed lower than expected, with exports bringing in $28.3 billion, or 90 per cent of the target, up 5.7 per cent year-on-year. The low export turnover is attributed to fewer export orders because of fierce competition from foreign textile and garment producers as well as a decline in global demand.
Vietnam’s leather and footwear industry expects to raise its export value by 10 per cent this year. To achieve the target, the leather and footwear sector needs to boost technological innovation, invest in new equipment and modernise existing equipment, expand the production scale of domestic enterprises to increase productivity as well as improve the quality of products.
Another promising element is the Vietnam-European Union free trade agreement, which will take effect in 2018 and afford Vietnamese footwear makers more opportunities to boost exports. Footwear currently ranks fourth and suitcase-bag-briefcase ranks tenth among Vietnam’s top ten foreign currency earners.