July 21, 2020

EuroCham speaks at the Seminar: “EVFTA Implementation – Opening Vietnamese Goods to the EU”

On the 17th of July in Hanoi, the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) and Tuoi Tre newspaper co-organised a seminar themed: “EVFTA Implementation – Opening Vietnamese Goods to the EU”. The aim of the seminar was to disseminate information about the EU market among businesses. The event was conducted via video-conference to connect representatives of Vietnamese Counselors and some businesses in the EU.
 
Under the commodity commitments, the EU will immediately remove import duties for 85.6% of tariff lines – equivalent to 70.3% of Vietnam's exports – when the agreement comes into effect. After a 7-year period, 99.2% of tariff lines – equivalent to 99.7% of Vietnam's exports – will be eliminated. On the other hand, Vietnam will cut 48.5% of tariff lines – equivalent to 64.5% of EU exports – to 0% right after the agreement enters into force. After 7 years, 91.8% of EU tariff lines will be completely eliminated.
 

Seminar: “EVFTA Implementation- Opening Vietnamese Goods to the EU” organised by MOIT and Tuoi Tre newspaper | Image credit: Nguyen Khanh
 

At the seminar, all speakers affirmed the advantages and great opportunities for the business community of both Vietnam and the EU when EVFTA is applied in the coming time.
 
On behalf of EuroCham, Vice Chairman Nguyen Hai Minh shared that Vietnam now has a great opportunity thanks to the EVFTA, which will enter into force on the 1st of August. The country also needs to take advantage of the post COVID-19 period and the shift of investment flow from China. Nowadays, it can be seen already that FDI and exports from Europe to Vietnam have increased significantly. However, this would be unlikely to happen in a short time, since it depends on many factors such as infrastructure improvement, human resources, administrative procedures, etc. For Vietnamese businesses, apart from the quality and price of products, they should approach the EU market in a new way and pay attention more to the rules of origin, corporate social responsibility (CSR), sustainable development, and environmental protection.
 

EuroCham Vice Chairman Nguyen Hai Minh speaking at the event
 

Earlier on the same day, EuroCham also had a Whitebook 2020 & ACAPR Dialogue (30 June 2020) follow-up meeting with Minister-Chairman of the Office of the Government Mr. Mai Tien Dung and leaders of relevant ministries to address the issues of goods labeling for EuroCham members. Such meetings have shown that the Government has continuously supported the business community to jointly enhance the trade and investment environment through simplification of administrative procedures, which EuroCham highly appreciates. EuroCham will continue to work closely with the Government and other stakeholders to improve the business environment and help to strengthen trade and investment relations between the EU and Vietnam, said Mr. Nguyen Hai Minh.
 

Mr. Iwan Rutjens, First Secretary at the Embassy of the Netherlands to Vietnam, speaking at the seminar
 

Speaking about how to make the most of the EVFTA’s advantages, Mr. Iwan Rutjens, First Secretary at Embassy of the Netherlands to Vietnam, suggested that diplomats and trade agencies need to study all the needs and tastes of European consumers in order to support the Vietnamese goods which have privileged access to enter the EU market.
 
Meanwhile, Mr. Tran Van Cong, the Trade Counselor of Vietnam to the European Union, confirmed that the Vietnamese agricultural sector is considered to be the most advantageous in the agreement. Currently, Vietnam is the second-largest agricultural exporter to EU countries after the United States. Exporters to European markets need to ensure GlobalGap certification standards for crop products. In addition to ensuring food safety, they must also meet the requirements of preserving sustainable development resources applied in the production process.
 
Mr. Do Viet Tung, representative from the European-American Market Department, Ministry of Industry and Trade, said that, due to the impact of trade wars, European and American businesses are shifting investment to other countries to ensure product supply chains. Therefore, Vietnamese businesses can take advantage of this opportunity to cooperate with European businesses in attracting investment in areas where Vietnam has clear advantages. From there, Vietnamese enterprises can export their products to the European Union.
 

Mr. Nguyen Hai Minh had an interview with Tuoi tre newspaper on the sidelines of the seminar
 

The seminar was organised live in Hanoi and via video-conference with Trade Counselors of Vietnam in EU countries and EU businesses

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