Vietnam was the only country in ASEAN to be upgraded in the global soft power rankings.
Vietnam is considered a bright spot thanks to the increasing value of Vietnam’s national brand and the socio-economic results achieved over the past year.
According to Brand Finance, Vietnam has brought into play all aspects of soft power relatively well, especially the integration of its leading product brands. Vietnam’s national reputation in the past year has increased in large part thanks to the Government’s quick policy responses especially its close direction in supporting businesses to build and promote their brands locally and abroad as well as the dynamism and efforts of Vietnamese businesses.
In order to publish the Global Soft Power Index 2021, Brand Finance held the “2021 Global Soft Power Summit” from 7:00 pm to 11:00 pm on February 25, 2021 (Vietnam time).
Samir Dixit, Managing Director of Brand Finance Asia Pacific, said that Vietnam seems to have managed all aspects of its reputation quite well, in particular the integration and alignment of its national brand and the brands from around the country.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc approved the Vietnam National Brand Programme from 2020 to 2030, which aims to increase the value and rankings of the national brand while hoping to make over 1,000 products national brands. These are managed through the specific efforts of and initiatives undertaken by Vietrade, under their national mark program “Vietnam Value”, Samir Dixit said.
According to Vu Ba Phu, Director General of the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency, Ministry of Industry and Trade of Vietnam, Vietnam is one of the most open economies in the world, with its ratio of trade to GDP increasing from 136% in 2010 to approximately 200% in 2019. Amid the COVID-19 shutdowns, which caused outputs to slump in early 2020, Vietnam was among only a small few countries able to achieve positive GDP growth – at nearly 3%.
Thanks to the support of the Vietnam National Brand Programme, many Vietnamese enterprises have gradually professionally created, developed, and promoted their brands, thereby improving their competitiveness and affirming their position in both domestic and foreign markets. Many outstanding Vietnamese enterprise brands have resonated in both the regional and international markets.
In the coming time, according to Director General Phu, in order to build up and promote its soft power, first of all, Vietnam needs to undertake a strategic orientation for systematic and long-term soft power promotion in the digital era.
Secondly, it is necessary to improve both growth quality and labor productivity, and to promote creative industries – thereby improving the overall competitiveness of the economy.
Thirdly, it is essential to continue to preserve and promote the diversified and rich values of Vietnamese culture.
Fourth, diplomacy should concentrate on enhancing capacity and asserting the role of “pivotal, leading and mediating” in region and international affairs.
Fifth, focused investment in science and technology development needs to be prioritized.
In addition to building and promoting its soft power, Vietnam also needs to strengthen its hard power to create synergy – “smart power” – to demonstrate the nation’s new geostrategic and geo-economic position.