Now is the time for Ho Chi Minh City to set up a global financial centre to meet the region’s increasing demand, according to foreign financial experts.
|Ho Chi Minh City wants to follow in the footsteps of financial hubs such as Shanghai and Singapore |
At the Ho Chi Minh City Economic Forum held last week, experts from South Korea, Hong Kong, China, and other international organisations shared their experiences in setting up financial centres with the city’s authorities.
According to Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, Ho Chi Minh City has high potential to expand from being the biggest financial centre in Vietnam to become an international business centre. “The aim of developing Ho Chi Minh City into a global financial hub is not solely the purpose of the city authorities, but the country as a whole,” he said.
Reflecting on the advances Vietnam has made over the past 30 years, DPM Dam said the nation has benefited from stable development and has consistently been one of the leading countries in the world in terms of economic progress.
Vietnam has enjoyed a growth rate of 6-8 per cent throughout the last 10 years. Over the next decade, DPM Dam said, the country is aiming for an annual growth rate in excess of 7 per cent.
“I think that Vietnam can achieve this economic goal because the government has been focusing its efforts on improving the business environment, and solving difficulties for companies and the business community.
In addition, setting up a global financial centre is an excellent initiative,” he added.
To develop Ho Chi Minh City in this direction, DPM Dam said, the government must provide outstanding incentives and advantages.
Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung agreed with the deputy prime minister’s assertion that the incoming global financial centre must have a positive impact on the entire country as well as on Ho Chi Minh City. “Taking into account the natural geography of Vietnam and Ho Chi Minh City being the economic flagship of the whole country, we are confident in saying that Ho Chi Minh City has the ideal opportunity to set up a global financial hub,” said Minister Dung.
“Establishing a worldwide financial hub is not a trend of a modern economy but an indicator of an active nation which is ready to develop and integrate with the globe,” he added.
Although the plan remains in the early stage, Dung predicted that its outstanding legal system will be more competitive than other markets in the region.
There are many advantages to the plan for developing Ho Chi Minh City. Among these are stable GDP, strong foreign direct investment, and efforts to renovate and improve the business environment from the government and local authorities.
According to Minister Dung, key factors in making Ho Chi Minh City more attractive include a competitive market, highly-qualified human resources, good infrastructure system, and a solid foundation for financial services.
Meanwhile Yue Yi, co-vice chairman of the Bank of China (Hong Kong), said that Ho Chi Minh City should grasp this opportunity with both hands.
“With the government’s strong commitment to economic development, stable social and economic foundations, and active integration through free trade agreements, it is high time for Vietnam to set up a global financial centre,” Yi said.
Patrick Lenain from the OECD stressed that regardless of the aforementioned advantages, in order to set up a global financial centre, Vietnam must improve its environmental and living standards, as well as prepare for a digital infrastructure system, fintech development, and green finance.