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February 2013

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Canada celebrates growing importance of Vietnam

Sunday, February 10, 2013 @ 03:02 PM

The Vietnamese Lunar Celebration TET is an annual event worldwide.  In Canada, Prime Minister Stephen Harper visited Mississauga mid-January to celebrate the growing influence of the Vietnam community in Canada by attending TET this year.

TET Toronto

The growth of interest about Vietnam in Canada is likely borne from the growing influence of the community in Canada – nearly 350,000 strong – many being professionals and business people across Canada, with quiet effectiveness.

Vietnam boasts one of the fastest growing economies in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN).  What’s not known is that the risk profile favours foreign direct investment (FDI) and stable returns for that investment.  We, as Canadians, just need to learn more about Vietnam and its aspirations for the future.  Vietnam is tiny country geography-wise, but is home to ninety (90) million people- where practicality and innovation are a characteristic. For example, Vietnam encourages FDI through industrial zones – areas where there is ample land to grow foreign manufacturing facilities.  Its workforce is skilled, educated and innovative.

In 2012, Prime Minister Harper challenged Canadians to innovate. Our group took up the challenge, travelled to Vietnam to explore opportunities with one of our most unique selling propositions – health care.

VN Minister of Health

Healthcare in Vietnam is evolving.  Most people with means in Vietnam seek their healthcare in places like Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and China.  K&A through Triple Eye Inc signed an historic partnership agreement with a local partner to build a Canadian branded hospital in a province (close to Hanoi) where thousands of workers who need health care close to home live and work.   Expatriates living in the area are delighted because they believe that Canadian healthcare is the best in the world and they won’t have to travel to other countries to get better healthcare. In fact, Vietnam’s Minister of Health (pictured above – taken in Hanoi September 2012) along with her colleagues in the ministries Foreign Affairs and Foreign Investment see Canadian healthcare as a brand on which to build its new model for domestic healthcare.   Other government officials like the project because they believe that repatriating dollars spent outside of Vietnam could be in the billions.  Media reports about our particular projects have surfaced and excitement is palpable.  We are presently in the process of securing our financing for the project, identifying the EPC partners and getting ready to deploy there in 2013.  K&A will be project manager and have agreed to manage the hospital, train Vietnamese healthcare workers and hopefully expand the model to other places throughout Vietnam.  It truly is a call action for Canadians taking up the challenge of innovating by exporting our know-how.

Look for more attention from the government of Canada specifically in Vietnam where our hospital project and other opportunities abound and are sure to be celebrated.

- Marc Kealey

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