I had time to think about the export opportunities of Finland to South-East Asia, while I was waiting for the plane at the Hanoi airport. For instance, we are trusted partner around Vietnam, and there are possibilities for growth in the construction of water infrastructure. However, new tactics are required in order to benefit from those opportunities and to enter the large tenders.
Population growth and urbanization are one of the global megatrends. Especially in South-East Asia, the water and wastewater infrastructure are not developing in the same rhythm with the population growth. In some places there are even no functioning wastewater treatment systems. Thus, there is demand for professionally designed and implemented solutions.
Finnish design and contract work of water infrastructure represent professional knowhow. We have references from many international projects, which have been implemented successfully. However, we do not get the best out of the export potential at the moment. We are known to be skillful, but the small size of the companies limits the possibilities to participate to, for instance, the large bidding competitions of water infrastructure in Vietnam. So far, we have been able to break into the large projects by becoming the technology supplier of the French and Japanese corporate giants. I see many opportunities for development, but it requires tighter collaboration and larger balances.
The solution is pretty simple. The companies need both private investors to strengthen the financial capital, and the government for collateral and warranty solutions. The companies of the industry bring the needed references and knowhow.
With this kind of assembly, the Finns could grow their market share in the water infrastructure projects in South-East Asia. I dare to predict that it would bring hundreds of jobs to Finnish designing, contract work, and machinery companies in Finland and in target countries. We have the ingredients to a success story. In order to succeed, new kind of collaboration between different operators is required.
Chairman of the board, Econet Group Oy
Chairman of the advisory board, Business Finland, Emerging markets
Further information for the media:
Matti Leppäniemi, Econet Ltd., tel.+358 (0)40 553 3001, matti.leppaniemi(at)econetgroup.fi
Econet Group is a water and environment technology service company. The Group includes Econet Ltd, Dewaco Ltd and Oy Slamex Ab. Helsinki-based Econet designs and offers solutions for clean water and environment globally. Laitila-based Dewaco, in turn, is specialised in sludge thickening, dewatering and sludge removal. Lahti-based Slamex designs and manufactures equipment for treatment of water and wastewater. The Group’s turnover amounts to about EUR 20 million.