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Retail changes hit Vietnamese labels

After acquiring supermarket chains in Vietnam, Thai retail groups have started strengthening the distribution of products from Thailand to the detriment of Vietnamese labels.

Central Group and BCJ Group now have more than 50 supermarkets and convenience stores in Vietnam, and VietnamNet reports that more than half of the retail market share in Vietnam is now in Thai hands.

Metro wholesale supermarkets, which have changed from German to Thai ownership, now feature Thai products in a special area by the main entrance, including household appliances, clothing, processed food and cosmetics.

VietnamNet says the volume of Vietnamese goods in supermarkets and shopping malls has dropped two-thirds, being replaced by Thai products.

Vietnamese manufacturers have complained about the volume of their products being cut back after Metro changed hands. Vietnamese goods have reportedly also been replaced at other retail chains, including Big C and B’s Mart.

Saigon Food general director Le Thi Thanh Lam says that foreign-owned retail chains always demand high discount rates from suppliers.

Vietnam High-quality Product Association chairperson Vu Kim Hanh says Thai goods will become a major rival for Vietnamese.

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