Hanoi, June 6 (CTK) – Czech businesspeople have signed seven contracts and memorandums, including those on digitation of the civil service, and the sale of drugs and optic fibres, during President Milos Zeman’s ongoing visit to Vietnam today.

The contracts were signed on the occasion of the Czech-Vietnamese trade forum held within the framework of Zeman’s visit.

During his trip to Vietnam and Kazakhstan, Zeman is accompanied by a business mission with 60 members from 50 companies. It includes former prime minister Petr Necas (2010-2013) and former foreign minister Jan Kavan (1998-2002).

The trip for the businesspeople is organised by the Czech Confederation of Industry. Along with the business forum, it stages a Wednesday seminar in Ho Chi Minh City.

Zeman will skip the event in view of his problems from during recent visit to China where he felt rather tired.

In his speech to the businesspeople, Zeman highlighted the Vietnamese community living in the Czech Republic and its integration into society as well as Vietnam’s economic development.

He said he could see some shortcomings in the relations with Vietnam, naming the lacking direct air connection and the question of visas.

“If we want to encourage tourism, it would be good to cancel short-term visas for Czechs,” Zeman said.

He is likely to discuss the issue with his Vietnamese counterpart Tran Dai Quang, but Vietnam is not about to lift the visa requirements.

Zeman also mentioned two failed Czech investments, but did not name the specific companies. He said one of the investments was resolved today, which was a friendly gesture.

Czech Confederation of Industry President Jaroslav Hanak said the mission included firms from various spheres such as manufacturing, information and communication technologies, energy, engineering and transport.

Seven of them signed contracts with their partners in Hanoi today. The drugs, dietary supplements and cosmetics maker Clinex was among them.

Jiri Starecek, chairman of the Clinex board of directors, said the firm was delivering four products to Vietnam and the number was newly to be enlarged to 12.

“These are products on the basis of drugs and dietary supplements such as vitamins which are not here,” Starecek said.

The Vietnamese partner will be delivering the goods to individual pharmacies.

Starecek estimated the volume of the trade at 3.5 million dollars in the next two years.

A contract was also signed by Optokon, a telecommunications and optic fibers maker.

Its head Jiri Stefl told journalists that the contract was quite important for Optokon, enabling a larger access to the Vietnamese market.

“It is necessary to provide all servicing to our products and more support for a large array of customers,” Stefl said.

The deal relates to the sphere of telecommunications market and products for military applications.

In the first year, the contract will involve orders for about 250,000 dollars and the next steps will depend on the Vietnamese side, Stefl said.

The Drevojas firm signed a contract on the delivery of a ceramic press and the Na Homolce hospital on cooperation with the Friendship Hospital in Hanoi.

Techniserv IT plan to cooperate with the Vietnamese on the digitation of the civil service. Contracts were also signed by the firms Vari Jsc. and East Sea Group.

In 2015, the Czech exports amounted to 2.4 billion crowns and imports to 15.6 billion.

On Thursday, Zeman and his wife Ivana will go to Kazakhstan and they will return to the Czech Republic on June 10.

($1 = 23.401 crowns)