December 14, 2020

Vietnam and the EU Celebrate 30 Years of Diplomatic Relations

This month, Vietnam and the European Union celebrated three decades of diplomatic relations. The social and economic ties between our two communities have gone from strength to strength ever since first being established in 1990. Over the last three decades, we have witnessed a series of significant milestones – starting with a Framework Cooperation Agreement in 1995 and then the first EU diplomatic mission opening in Hanoi in 1996. This has now culminated in the implementation of our EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) after almost a decade of negotiation and ratification.
   

H.E. Mr Giorgio Aliberti (on the left) – Head of the EU Delegation to Vietnam and H. E. Mr Nguyen Xuan Phuc – Prime Minister of Vietnam. Photo by VGP

    
The last three decades have been a period of profound growth and development for Vietnam. The Đổi Mới reforms of 1986, in which the government embraced ‘socialist-oriented market economics’, triggered major socio-economic changes which transformed Vietnam into a middle-income nation. The EU has been one of Vietnam’s strongest supporters throughout this transformation to a state which is at the heart of global value chains and an active participant in international trade. It has provided concessional loans and grants to support Vietnam’s development and international integration, with over 5 billion euro in grants over the last decade alone. Meanwhile, bilateral trade has risen from around 10 billion euro in 2009 to over 45 billion euro in 2019.
   

EuroCham Gala Dinner & Business Awards 2020 in celebration of the EVFTA
      
Now, we look forward to a new chapter in EU-Vietnam friendship. With the EVFTA now entered into force, we are entering a new era in which trade and investment will flow more than ever before. Meanwhile, cooperation will also increase in other areas from food standards to sustainable development and from environmental protection to green and renewable energies. EuroCham has been proud to be a part of building stronger ties – though our work here in Vietnam and our Missions to Brussels to advocate for the EVFTA – and we will continue in this role in the next chapter of EU-Vietnam relations.

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