Vietnam and the United Kingdom are accelerating negotiations on a new-generation free trade agreement, which is poised to be finalized by the end of this year, according to a webinar running the theme “Vietnam’s Trade and Economic Future: Opportunities for British and Vietnamese Businesses”.
Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Hoang Quoc Vuong speaks at the event
The event was jointly organized by the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s European-American Market Department, the UK-ASEAN Business Council, the Vietnamese Embassy in the UK and the UK Embassy in Vietnam on October 6.
In his remarks, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Hoang Quoc Vuong said as one of the world leading economic, political, cultural and scientific centers in terms of external economic relations, the UK is an important market and always a prioritized cooperation partner of Vietnam.
The UK is a potential market for Vietnam’s tropical farm produce, garment and textiles, footwear, wood products and mobile phones, while Vietnam is a gateway market for UK businesses to have access to the wider regional market.
Along with the national development and the joint efforts of the business community of the two nations, the economic and trade ties between Vietnam and the UK has made remarkable progress in recent years.
After more than 45 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1973, in addition to the great achievements the two countries have recorded in the construction and development of each nation, the friendly relations and economic and trade exchange have constantly grown, with bilateral trade exchange in 2017 increasing by 3.5 times in 10 years to US$ 6.2 billion.
Since both nations signed a strategic partnership agreement in 2010, their two-way trade had surged by 3.5 times to US$6.61 billion in 2019.
As of August 2020, the UK had 400 valid investment projects in Vietnam with combined registered capital of US$2.6 billion, ranking 16th out of 137 nations and territories pouring capital into Vietnam.
Vietnam and the UK are making every effort to establish legal frameworks for bilateral trade facilitation, in line with the requirements of the new situation, while avoiding disruption of commercial business and investment activities of their businesses. Specifically, they are about to consider the application of the EU-Vietnam Trade Agreement (EVFTA) in the transition period and speed up bilateral FTA negotiations.
Deputy Minister Hoang Quoc Vuong expressed his confidence that economic-trade-investment cooperation between Vietnam and the UK will continue to grow stronger in the coming time, thereby achieving goals set out by the two governments in the Joint Declaration on the Vietnam-UK strategic partnership signed between the two countries in 2010 and 2020.
At the seminar, speakers also exchanged information and comprehensive views on Vietnam's economic and trade prospects, as well as policies and measures to promote bilateral economic and trade relations with the UK in the time ahead, especially in the context of the UK having left the European Union on January 31, 2020, and the prospect of early signing a new generation FTA between the two nations.VOV