Vietnamese handicraft enterprises had to make greater efforts to meet the requirements of foreign customers, said participants in a seminar held in Ho Chi Minh City on April 11.
Speaking at the seminar on improving the standards and practices for export products in Vietnamese handicraft sector, Deputy Chairman of the Vietnam Handicraft Exporters Association (VietCraft) Le Ba Ngoc said foreign importers increasingly required their suppliers to meet the sector’s standards on quality, corporate social responsibility and environmental protection.
Handicraft enterprises required to comply with standards for export products__Photo: Internet
A survey of 100 international customers conducted in 2016 by VietCraft with funding from the Australian Government found that 75 percent of importers wanted their suppliers to comply with standards in the next five years, he said.
The Asia Foundation has implemented a project funded by the Australian Government to support VietCraft to improve sector standards and practices.
This was done through a series of activities including research into international standards; development of a manual on international compliance criteria with special focus on ceramics, lacquer ware, rattan, and bamboo; assistance for handicraft enterprises with improvement plans including design and marketing; and policy advocacy for further compliance initiatives among other handicraft products with exporters, business associations, and relevant government agencies.
The Asia Foundation has supported VietCraft to digitize the international compliances as well as sector standards into a business compliance software. The software content is a comprehensive library of international compliances and sector standards consolidated by the project experts who are also business practitioners from the handicraft sector.
The user-friendly software would not only provide handicraft enterprises an online tool to determine their status, but also create opportunities for them to discuss with and acquire technical assistance from other experts and practitioners, he said.
Ngoc said the association regularly organizes training courses and provides consultancy to help enterprises comply with the standards.
Delegates at the seminar learnt how to use the new business compliance software to measure their present level of compliance.- (VLLF)