Vietnam launched a $3.2 million project on trade promotion and export development in Hanoi last week. The project is expected to improve current inadequate and ineffective trade promotion activities.

The project focuses on some major activities, including designing broad export development plans for the country with a focus on several sectors in particular and developing a commerce network to link government, trade organizations and export enterprises.

The project, which will be carried out over three years, is sponsored by Switzerland, Sweden and the International Trade Center, and implemented by the Trade Promotion Agency of the Ministry of Trade.

Of the total capital, the Swiss Economic Federation is to provide $2.5 million and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) will provide the remaining $1.7 million.

Despite poor trade promotion programs, Vietnam achieved high growth rates in foreign trade in the first eight months of this year. The country secured total export revenues of $16.8 billion and spent $19.8 billion on imports, up 25.7% and 19.4%, respectively, against the same period last year. (Vietnam News Brief Service)