Up until today the people of Vietnam where unable to buy domestic made Vespa scooters. Piaggio said that today they are going to build a scooter factory in the Vietnamese city of Vinh Phuc which is near the capital Hanoi. The factory is expected to produce around 50,000 scooters per year with the first scooter to come off the production line in 2009. In comparison with many western nations, Vietnam has already taken to scooters like a duck to water. Motorcycles are actually the most popular form of transport with over 21 million registered bikes on the road today. The Vietnamese market is also growing by 2 million bikes a year!
Piaggio has said they are planning to invest $30 million into the new factory over the next 2 years. Vietnam already has strong competitors in the motorcycle industry with Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki all have a base in the country.
I think this is great news for the people of Vietnam and I will look forward to riding a brand new Vespa when I make my visit in the next 3 years.