Logistics is an important service sector, playing the role of supporting, connecting industries and promoting socio-economic development. Logistics is a chain of services from the pre-production stage to the finished products to customers. This sector is directly related to transportation, forwarding, warehousing, administrative services, consulting (customs, tax, insurance), commercial import and export, distribution channels and many other business activities.
Developing logistics services into a service industry will bring added value by connecting logistics services with development of goods production, import/export and domestic trade, and development of public infrastructure and information technology. Developing a healthy logistics service market will create equal opportunities for businesses of all economic sectors, and attract domestic and foreign investment capital in accordance with the Vietnamese law and international treaties to which Vietnam is a member.
According to the Vietnam Logistics Business Association (VLA), the growth rate of the logistics industry in Vietnam has been around 14% -16% in recent years, with sales of about USD 40-42 billion/year. There are about 3,000 domestic enterprises and about 25 leading logistics groups in the world participating in the Vietnamese logistics market. Currently, there 30 companies providing transnational logistics services operating in Vietnam such as DHL, FedEx, Maersk Logistics, APL Logistics, CJ Logistics, and KMTC Logistics.
According to the World Bank, Vietnam currently ranks 64th out of 160 countries in terms of logistics development and 4th in ASEAN after Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand. With an annual growth rate of 14-16%, this is one of the fastest growing and most stable service industries in Vietnam in recent years.
It is forecasted that, by the end of 2020, Vietnam's import and export turnover will be about USD 300 billion, and container cargo through Vietnam's seaport system will reach 67.7 million TEU. Therefore, the potential for developing Vietnamese logistics services is huge. In the near future, logistics services will become an important economic sector that can contribute up to 15% Vietnam’s GDP.
Notably, there has been a boom in e-commerce and e-Logistics recently. According to the Department of E-Commerce and Digital Economy of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, e-commerce growth is 35% per year. Vietnam's retail e-commerce sales in the 2016-2020 are expected to increase by 20% per year, and the country's total retail e-commerce sales are expected to reach USD 10 billion in 2020. Changes in E-commerce in the world and in Vietnam has pushed Vietnam's logistics industry to improve its service delivery mode to be more professional and efficient.
Currently, Vietnam is believed to have many opportunities to promote the development of the logistics industry. Specifically, the system of road traffic infrastructure, airports, seaports, warehouses, commercial infrastructure, and logistics centers are constantly being expanded on a large and widespread scale. Along with that, the accompanying services have been promptly responding to the diverse requirements of the market. Customs clearance procedures for exports have also improved significantly.
In 2017, the customs clearance time for exports was 105 hours and for imports was 132 hours. Vietnam is also ranked 39th out of 160 countries in terms of logistics performance index and 3rd in ASEAN. These factors have created conditions for businesses to develop, reduce costs, and improve competitiveness.
The improvement of legal regulations has recently been concerned by the Government. The fact of Vietnam's increasingly deepening international economic integration, especially participating in new generation Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), requires appropriate regulations and favorable conditions to help develop the logistics industry, and to promote domestic investment and international cooperation.
The Prime Minister issued Decision No. 200/QD-TTg dated February 14, 2017, approving the Action Plan to improve the competitiveness of and develop Vietnam's logistics industry to 2025. There are 6 goals and 60 specific tasks with many comprehensive solutions to help this industry to overcome difficulties and challenges, to reach advanced level, and to meet the requirements of economic development.
On December 30, 2017, the Government issued Decree No. 163/2017/ND-CP on providing logistics services (effective from February 20, 2018), replacing Decree No. 140 / 2007 / ND-CP dated September 5, 2007 and detailing the Commercial Law regarding logistics business conditions and the limitation of liability for logistics services providers.
The promulgation of this Decree has comprehensively covered logistics services, and internalized international commitments on logistics as outlined in the Action Plan to improve competitiveness and develop logistics services until 2025. This is a new step in institutional reforms related to the logistics service industry.
On July 6, 2018, the Prime Minister signed Decision No. 27/2018/QD-TTg promulgating the System of Vietnam's Economy, and this is the first time that Vietnam had had its own logistics code (Code 52292: Logistics). On July 18, 2018, the Prime Minister issued Directive No. 21/CT-TTg on accelerating the implementation of solutions to reduce logistics costs, and effectively connect the transport infrastructure system. The Government has strongly committed to support and create a favorable environment to develop Vietnam's logistics industry.
Top 10 largest companies in Vietnam’s logistics industry were selected by VietnamCredit based on their size, business performance in 2018, 2017 and 2016 and objective assessment by credit rating experts of VietnamCredit.
Source: WB, VietnamCredit