Monday, April 15,2024 - 7:50 GMT+7  Việt Nam EngLish 

Continuing to accelerate integration race 

 Wednesday, February 21,2024

AsemconnectVietnam - More than 53 billion USD - a number that is still too modest in the total world market capacity, requiring businesses to adapt and speed up in integration race.

Opportunity is still huge
Penetrating into potential EU market with 508 million people and a gross domestic product (GDP) of about 18,000 billion USD, Mr. Pham Trung Nghia - Deputy Chief of Office of Interdisciplinary Steering Committee for International Economic Integration - recognized, this is an opportunity to increase exports for products that Vietnam has advantages such as textiles and garments, footwear, agricultural and aquatic products, honey, fruits and vegetables, wooden furniture, etc.
Economic structures of the EU and Vietnam are highly complementary, not directly confrontational. In 2022, many agricultural, forestry and aquatic products reached double-digit growth in export turnover to the EU market, such as seafood increasing by 29.5%; vegetables and fruits increased by 34.2%; rice increased by 50%; wood and wood products increased by 85.1%.
“There are still dissatisfied opinions. For example, exports grew strongly but main proportion still favored FDI enterprises (accounting for 77%). Or with livestock industry, we are still facing many difficulties and facing relatively fierce competition", Mr. Pham Trung Nghia shared.
Problems are still "unhappy", according to Mr. Pham Trung Nghia, due to division of benefits and ability to take advantage of advantages between countries when signing free trade agreements (FTA). However, "sweet fruits" from integration are undeniable.
Mr. Pham Trung Nghia said that before signing EVFTA agreement, Vietnam's export growth in this market reached more than 10% and after the agreement taking effect, it still recorded an export growth rate of more than 10% but here we need to talk about export weight.
This means that when export turnover is already high, the fact that we can still maintain export growth rate at a high number.
Or story of rate of C/O usage in CPTPP agreement in 2022 reaching 2.6 billion USD, accounting for only 5% of general export turnover to CPTPP market block.
The reason is that we already have free trade agreements with other countries in the CPTPP region, so businesses tend to take advantage of FTAs more easily in addition to taking advantage of tax incentives.
"So far, European Union - Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) is truly a success story", Chairman of European Parliament's International Trade Committee, Mr. Bernd Lange shared at the meeting with the press on afternoon of January 18, 2024.
Mr. Bernd Lange said that after 3 years of implementing the EVFTA Agreement, trade turnover between EU and Vietnam has grown by 20%. Tax lines for goods exported from Vietnam to EU have been lifted by 71%, while in opposite direction, 65% of tax lines for goods exported from the EU to Vietnam have been lifted. A noteworthy point is that during implementation of the agreement, the two sides jointly fulfilled their commitments and obligations.
Mr. Bernd Lange commented that the agreements between EU and Vietnam, including the EVFTA, are "keystones and important milestones for relationship between the two sides". In particular, in a world context with many complex changes, confrontation and protectionism still present, this is a very good foundation to promote relationship between the two sides.
Remove barriers and speed up agricultural, forestry and fishery exports
In context of globalization taking place on a large scale, many technical barriers are being erected in major markets. Notably, major countries prioritize bilateral cooperation, so role of multilateral institutions will be somewhat blurred. On global level, major countries are increasingly competing fiercely, in which the US and China have a direct confrontation in fields of economics, trade and technology.
Benefits from the integration process are reflected in import and export numbers, export market diversification or economic growth. Participating in new generation FTAs (FTAs) such as CPTPP or EVFTA, according to Mr. Pham Trung Nghia, this is a step for Vietnamese businesses and Vietnamese agricultural products to practice and get used to the new regulations. At the same time, it continues to affirm that Vietnam is in a special position in the map of international economic integration.
Because of the reality, with the business community, in recent times, although the Government, ministries and branches have tried to open export markets and many FTAs, however, the ability of businesses to take advantage of Still not much.
In addition, businesses must comply with strict regulations and rules on technical standards (TBT); animal and plant quarantine measures (SPS); rules of origin; food quality, hygiene and safety; labeling, environment, green products...
It's not too late but it's not too early either, so businesses need to research and adjust appropriate production processes to take advantage of the opportunities brought by FTAs.
"If we cannot take advantage of, for example, the EU signed with Thailand - this is a market with similar export products as Vietnam, then we will no longer have many advantages in exporting to the bloc, Mr. Pham Trung Nghia emphasized.
Economic expert Dinh Trong Thinh assessed that when the market door has opened, there are still technical barriers, the story of green standards, or greening production is a message mentioned throughout 2023.
“We also hope that in 2024, businesses can transform and meet greening standards that markets have set, thereby promoting export activities in traditional markets and expand in markets where we have signed FTAs. At that time, Vietnam will achieve higher import-export growth in 2024", economist Dinh Trong Thinh emphasized.
Regarding Chinese market, Mr. Pham Trung Nghia commented that this is a market that was, is and will be the most important market of Vietnam not only in export but also in import; not only in official exports but also in border trade; not only for both standard and non-standard goods...
Mr. Pham Trung Nghia also recommended that businesses need to proactively and actively seek out information about integration commitments, focus on learning and firmly grasping information about tax reduction roadmaps related to products, their business to have appropriate strategies to adjust production, business and competition to take advantage of opportunities brought by FTAs.
Continue to open up trade flow of agricultural products
Regarding import-export work in general and export of agricultural, forestry and fishery products in particular, Mr. Tran Thanh Hai - Deputy Director of the Import-Export Department (Ministry of Industry and Trade) - said that Vietnam currently has a relative advantage. That's the 16 FTAs signed with most of Vietnam's main trading partners.
However, there are still some market areas that we have not exploited much, including the Middle East, Africa and Latin America. Most recently, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has also focused on the Middle East region, in which the Free Trade Agreement between Vietnam and Israel ended negotiations on April 2, 2023 after more than 7 years with 12 negotiating sessions and officially signed on July 25, 2023. And soon, negotiations on the Agreement with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will be concluded.
"These are two important gateways in bringing goods into the Middle East region. For the Africa and Latin America regions, the Ministry of Industry and Trade is researching to come up with an appropriate proposal, and in case we negotiate With major partners in these markets, we will promote and sign FTAs, through which it can be said that Vietnam covers almost all important markets in the world," Mr. Tran Thanh Hai commented.

Source: Vitic/ congthuong.vn
 

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