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|The opening ceremony of VIDEC 10|
In late August 2017, the 10th Vietnam International Dental Exhibition and Congress (VIDEC 10) was held in Hanoi. Titled “Innovation in Dentistry,” VIDEC 10 is the largest international annual dental event in Vietnam with internationally-recognised prestige, co-hosted by the Vietnam Odonto-Stomatolo Association (VOSA), the National Hospital of Odonto-Stomatology (NHOS), and the World Dental Federation.
The three-day event lasting from August 23 to 25 attracted more than 110 companies to an international dental exhibition with over 280 booths, introducing advanced and modern dental products from leading manufacturers from the US, Europe, Japan, South Korea, and many other countries around the globe.
Most participants wanted to seek Vietnamese distribution partners or opportunities to supply medical equipment for local hospitals and healthcare facilities.
"Our products have been present in Vietnam for a long time. Earlier, we had agents to solely distribute our products in the market. Seeing the market potential, our company opened a representative office in Hanoi about two months ago to promote our sales," Le Duc Thien, sales representative of South Korea-based Vatech, told VIR.
Vatech specialises in intra-oral sensors and digital panoramic cephalometric X-ray devices.
"Our main markets now include China, Finland, France, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. In Vietnam, our business focuses on clinics," he added.
A number of others, including HDX Corporation, SDS Smart Dental Solutions, and Fotona, are making the same move.
Prof, Dr Trinh Dinh Hai, chairman of VOSA cum director of NHOS, stated that thanks to the application of advanced technologies in recent years, the dental industry in Vietnam has been constantly improving with increased quality of medical examinations and treatment.
"Dentistry is among the singular fields where Vietnam is now leading in the region. For example, oral-facial implant surgery has been available in NHOS for about ten years now, but neighbouring countries, such as Thailand and Singapore, have only deployed these methods recently," he added.
In addition to the strong interest among international groups to supply medical equipment for the local market, bringing production to Vietnam has also emerged as an attractive investment channel, as the market sees annual growth of 18-20 per cent.
Nipro Pharma Corporation—Japan’s biggest prescription drug contract manufacturer—is expanding its medical equipment production operations in Vietnam with a new project currently under construction in Saigon Hi-Tech Park in Ho Chi Minh City. In 2012, the firm kicked off its first plant in the northern port city of Haiphong and has already put it into operation.
Besides Saigon Hi-Tech Park, global healthcare group Sanofi and B. Braun, Germany's biggest pharma and medical equipment producer, have been expanding in Vietnam.
According to the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham), the Vietnamese medical equipment market is currently valued at $465.4 million and is forecast to hit $1.4 billion in 2018.
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