The Korea-Vietnam Partnership Fair 2023, held during South Korean President Yoon Suk-Yeol’s visit to Vietnam on June 22-24, witnessed the prominent presence of cosmetics brands.
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With over 120 distinguished South Korean enterprises participating in the fair, the cosmetics sector showcased its diverse offerings alongside other industries such as food and beverages, consumer goods, pharmaceuticals, and healthcare.
Tran Thi Hai Yen, head of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency in Hanoi, emphasised that South Korean businesses, including cosmetics companies, were actively seeking trade cooperation in Vietnam, capitalising on the country’s burgeoning population, expanding middle class, and escalating appetite for high-quality products.
Vu Thi Thu, director of Faso Vietnam Co., Ltd., an importer and distributor of South Korean merchandise, attested to the growing popularity of its products in Vietnam.
“Faso has successfully imported an extensive repertoire of nearly 1,000 product lines, effectively reaching a broad spectrum of distributors and supermarkets across the nation,” Thu said.
She believes that Vietnam has emerged as an irresistible market for South Korean cosmetics companies, propelled by a combination of factors that make it a prime destination for their products.
According to the Korea Herald, Vietnam’s demographic advantage cannot be overstated. With a population of over 100 million, the country boasts a significant proportion of young consumers who are increasingly demanding high-quality beauty products.
Vietnamese beauty enthusiasts often seek to emulate the flawless complexions and innovative beauty routines showcased by their favourite idols, turning to South Korean cosmetics to achieve their coveted beauty aesthetic.
Data released by the Korean Cosmetic Association reveals that exports of the nation’s cosmetics to Vietnam between January and May this year surged by 43.4 per cent compared to the same period last year, reaching an export value of $187.5 million.
Vietnam has emerged as the fastest-growing market for Korean cosmetics, outpacing the United States, which experienced a 25.7 per cent growth rate with exports totalling $425.12 million. In contrast, Chinese exports of Korean cosmetics declined by 25.7 per cent to $1.2 billion, while exports to Japan saw a 5.3 per cent decrease, reaching $323.9 million.
The US Department of Commerce reports that South Korea holds the largest market share in Vietnam’s imported cosmetics market at 30 per cent, followed by the EU at 23 per cent, Japan 17 per cent, Thailand 13 per cent, and the US 10 per cent. Currently, foreign brands account for 90 per cent of cosmetics consumed in Vietnam.
A 2022 survey by Q&Me Market Research Company among women aged 16-40 in major cities such as Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi reveals that 93 per cent of women aged 25-32 regularly use Korean skincare products.
These products are primarily purchased from brand stores, health and beauty retail chains, and e-commerce platforms. Vietnamese women spend an average of around $18 per month on skincare products, with the most popular items being facial cleansers, makeup removers, sunscreen, and moisturisers.
Statista estimates that Vietnam’s cosmetics market will reach a value of $2.7 billion next year.
According to global market researchers Mintel, the current value of Vietnam’s cosmetics market stands at approximately $2.63 billion, with an expected annual growth rate of 3.32 per cent until 2027. Skincare products are the most popular category, with over 60 per cent of consumers using them daily.
In December 2022, the Beautycare Expo showed the latest products and technologies in Hanoi. Experts and managers at the event projected that the value of Vietnam’s skincare market would reach nearly $770 million in 2020 and is expected to reach $1.92 billion by 2027. Industry giants from South Korea such as AmorePacific have gained significant popularity in Vietnam, with 29 stores in the country as of October last year. With a diverse portfolio of renowned brands such as Sulwhasoo, Laneige, and Innisfree, AmorePacific has successfully captured the attention of Vietnamese consumers.
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