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VietNamNews

EU, Viet Nam move forward on FTA agreement for 2018

Update: March, 03/2016 - 09:20
EuroCharm Chairwoman Nicola Connolly said the attractiveness of Viet Nam to foreign investors is undeniable as the Southeast Asian country is incessantly improving its business climate. — Photo vtv

HA NOI (VNS) — Viet Nam and the European Union (EU) will push ahead with the review of legal documents towards the signing and application of their bilateral free trade agreement (EVFTA) in 2018.

Minister of Industry and Trade, Vu Huy Hoang, was speaking at a ceremony to publish the White Book on trade and investment in Viet Nam in 2016. The event was held in Ha Noi yesterday by the European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) and the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI).

He raised the fact that two-way trade increased tenfold from US$4.1 billion in 2000 to $41.4 billion in 2015, making the EU one of the top trade partners of Viet Nam.

The union is also a big foreign direct investor in Viet Nam with 2,162 valid projects worth $38.4 billion, he said, adding that the mutual support in Viet Nam-EU trade and investment ties will help further bilateral co-operation after the signing of the EVFTA.

Ambassador and Head of the EU delegation to Viet Nam Bruno Angelet said the EVFTA would activate a new wave of better-quality investment from the EU into Viet Nam, which, he said, must be supported by Vietnamese private businesses to boost the country's deep integration.

EuroCharm Chairwoman Nicola Connolly said the attractiveness of Viet Nam to foreign investors is undeniable as the Southeast Asian country is incessantly improving its business climate.

However, more reforms are needed to maintain the country's development, she added.

EU representatives suggested Viet Nam develop human resources via vocational training as well as increase productivity and improve capital distribution.

This is the 8th edition of EuroCham's annual advocacy publication on Trade, Investment Issues and Recommendations. The edition contains 22 chapters and is a collective expression of the views of EuroCham member companies, which operate in a wide range of industries in key issues of FDI, business administration, energy, and green growth, apart from human resource development, intellectual property right, merger and acquisition, and public-private partnership. They also operate in transport, logistics, taxes and customs.

The White Book 2016 highly values positive improvements in legal documents on taxes such as preferential for business expansion and enterprises in industrial parks, personal income tax and value-added tax.

Relating to the customs sector, EuroCham companies support changes in Law on Customs. The application of the Viet Nam Automated Cargo and Port Consolidated System (VNACCS/VCIS) has helped customs offices to implement a range of risk management systems, increasing control on smuggling and illegal trading. In addition, the system also helps cargoes with less risks quickly complete customs clearance procedures.

The publication echoes the European business community's desire to support the Vietnamese government in the development of the current legal framework and a positive business environment in Viet Nam, for the benefit of companies, investors and society. On the occasion of this conference, a strategic co-operation agreement between VCCI and EuroCham was signed to develop the partnership on providing information and support on the EU-VN FTA to the respective members. — VNS

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