Vietnam is embarking on an unprecedented dealmaking spree as the economy prepares to open up to greater foreign competition.

Acquisitions involving Vietnamese companies may reach as much as a record $4.5 billion this year, surpassing $4.2 billion in 2012, Christopher Kummer, president of the Institute of Mergers, Acquisitions and Alliances, said by e-mail. There have already been $1.9 billion of deals so far this year, the most in three years, data from the Vienna-based think tank Show.

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