He added: “I have been to many international book fairs. The more I go, the sadder I feel for our book business. We have not formally introduced our own Vietnamese book trademark yet, or satisfied the demands of our readers. The reason is partially due to the lack of budget, but, more importantly it is because the Government has not had any guidelines for these matters. At the moment, opening a Vietnamese bookstore at overseas seems to be fruitless. It is impossible to hire a good showroom to bear the high freight cost and to have enough labor.
However, the bookstore can succeed if we try our best. For example, about the showroom, we can ask for the support from the Department of International Cultural Cooperation of the Embassy of Vietnam as we can advertise our Vietnamese culture. I have been to Singapore, Thailand and Switzerland to have some discussions and the result is viable. I chose Switzerland because I personally know the Ambassador of Vietnam to Switzerland. I am planning to develop Vietnamese bookstores in many other countries.
In the long term, the Vietnamese bookstore may become the agent in trading books and royalties. We need a government policy on publishing, translating and editing bilingual books.