Vietnam holds the potential for further logistics and maritime development

Expressed by Mrs. Franger Chouraqui Adeline, General Director of CMA CGM Vietnam JSC in a talk with VCCI-HCMC branch on the occasion of 35 years of FDI mobilization in Vietnam.


Mrs. Franger Chouraqui Adeline, General Director of CMA CGM Vietnam


Could you please share some impressive milestones of CMA CGM Vietnam JSC since first established in Vietnam?

The CMA CGM Group is a global player in sea, land, air and logistics solutions. The Group’s shipping business has been operating in Vietnam since 1989.  We operate through our agency – i.e., CMA CGM Vietnam JSC – with 31 shipping services that call 7 ports along the coast of Vietnam, offering intermodal connections mainly by barge in South Vietnam.

Our maritime services in Vietnam have grown over time. CMA CGM was the first international carrier to call Chu Lai Port in 2018 and Nghi Son in 2019. January 2019 saw the 16,000-TEU CMA CGM Marco Polo, the first container vessel of this size to call Vietnam.

Our Group also holds stakes in Gemalink in Cai Mep as well as Vietnam International Container Terminal in Ho Chi Minh City. In fact, our joint venture Gemalink achieved a throughput of 1 million TEUs during its first year of operation in 2021.

Through the CMA CGM Group’s joint venture company, General International Logistics (GIL), launched the Ho Chi Minh City – Cai Mep barge service in April this year to shuttle cargo between SP-ITC terminal in Ho Chi Minh City to the deep seaport of Cai Mep. This service offers Vietnamese shippers a more economical and environmentally friendly way to transport containers between these two national ports, which are 80 km apart.

COVID-19 Outbreak spread has affected the whole supply chain worldwide, raising potential major challenges, how has Covid-19 outbreak had impacts on CMA CGM Vietnam and how CMA CGM Vietnam ensure the delivery of seamless customers experience?

The pandemic disrupted global logistics chains but the Group adapted quickly and invest in assets and logistics infrastructure including:

  • Increased shipping capacity by 5.8% last year, with almost 175,000 TEUs of capacity contributed by 47 vessels that joined the fleet.
  • Adding 800,000 containers over 15 months.
  • Acquiring Ingram Micro CLS and Colis Prive serve to strengthen our capabilities in e-commerce and last mile solutions.
  • Investing in strategic terminals to support the growth of our shipping lines and improve the quality of services .
  • Creating CMA CGM AIR CARGO with 6 aircraft in operation today and 6 more to come by 2026.
  • Signing a 10-year strategic partnership with Air France-KLM Group to strengthen air cargo offering.
  • Pioneering several digital solutions such as SpotOn to simplify customers’ spot booking process, and SMART container service to offer customers’ maximum visibility and complete traceability on cargoes, and more.
  • Specifically in Vietnam, the CMA CGM Group has worked on innovative solutions to provide continuity for our customers supply chain; namely chartering aircraft to transport medical equipment from Vietnam to the USA, establishing rail connection from Vietnam into Europe as an alternative to maritime transportation as well as developing digital solutions to offer container reuse and limit the carbon footprint and costs for our customers.

After 35 years of implementation of the open-door policy to foreign investors, Vietnam has carried out various measures to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) flows, how do you evaluate this process?

We believe that Vietnam’s policy has been instrumental to the country’s robust economic growth. In recent years, we have seen strong growth in shipments, and it is consistent with the policy introduced to attract foreign direct investments.

What improvements should the Government do to make Vietnam more attractive to foreign investors?

As a member of the business and maritime community, we see opportunities that the industry could tap for further growth.

First, Vietnam’s terminal infrastructure could scale to the next level by concentrating on developing the deep-sea ports of Cai Mep and Lach Huyen. Continual dredging in Cai Mep and Lach Huyen therefore would be instrumental for this development.

Planning terminal development in accordance with the market’s need is key. As a carrier, we shall continue to engage on our plans to develop infrastructure as well as new Shipping Routes.

The connectivity from sea to land and vice versa should stay seamless. It is therefore important that ICD development continues, especially in Binh Duong and Dong Nai Provinces.

An important subject on Port development is digitalization. Such solutions can offer transparency and facilitate data exchanges between port authorities, terminal operators, carriers and shippers for safe and optimal operations. CMA CGM has developed with Vietnamese startup a digital solution helping our customer get visibility and REUSE container. We shall continue to engage with International and Vietnamese companies to establish more connections between main actors and to provide more visibility to our customers.

According to you, is it a possibility that Vietnam will become an important center for international logistics and shipping industry in the future? (If yes, what make you believe it)?

Vietnam is a coastal country that is well connected with inland waterways. With these natural assets alongside its geographical position in the Indo-Pacific region, a dynamic and skilled workforce, competitive labor costs among others, Vietnam holds the potential for further logistics and maritime development.

The Decision 667 that was recently issued, approves foreign investment cooperation strategy for the 2021-2030 period on reforming the business environment and increasing foreign investment from certain countries. This is expected to attract more inflows to Vietnam, thus the related industries, especially shipping and logistics are likely to follow the upward trend.

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