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Japanese And South Korean Retailers In The Mood For Expansion In Vietnam

November 25, 2010: 01:59 AM EST

Japanese and South Korean retailers are opening shopping centers and convenience stores in Vietnam. Targeting mostly young consumers and middle-income families, these retail outlets are a new business concept in the country. With four convenience stores operating in Ho Chi Minh City, FamilyMart Co. of Japan plans to open about 300 more in the city and is looking at Hanoi too. Meanwhile, South Korean retail giant Lotte has opened two supermarkets, with one branch large enough to include a six-screen cinema complex. Lotte plans to build more than 30 supermarkets in the country by 2018, and build a department store in Hanoi. After joining the World Trade Organization in 2007, Vietnam has allowed foreign companies to enter its retail business, which grew to 1,200 trillion dong (about US$61 million) in 2009, a threefold increase from 2004 figures, according to government data. The South Korean and Japanese companies are hoping to gain a foothold before global giants like Wal-Mart and Carrefour arrive in the country.

Kiyohide Inada and Hisashi Naito, "Japan, South Korean retailers expanding to Vietnam", Asahi.com, November 25, 2010, © The Asahi Shimbun Company
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