Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc speaks at the “Meet Europe 2018” conference in Hà Nội on Friday.— VNA/VNS Photo Thống Nhất
HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam is working hard to build a constructive and upright Government to serve people and businesses, while focusing on developing innstitutions, improving governance capacity and bringing more opportunities to all enterprises, including investors from Europe, said Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc at the “Meet Europe 2018” conference in Hà Nội on Friday.
PM Phúc said Việt Nam is striving to rank as a top ASEAN country and achieve high standards in the business environment, while strictly implementing commitments to intellectual property protection.
The country has also been encouraging environment-friendly technologies, climate change adaptation and State-owned enterprise restructuring, he said, adding that reform measures have been implemented in all 63 cities and provinces where European investors and businesses have been or will be running investment projects.
The Vietnamese Government’s efforts and effective co-operation with international partners, including those from Europe, have given a facelift to Việt Nam’s economy, making it more dynamic and helping the country involve itself more deeply in the regional and global value chains, he said. He said that European partners are the leading foreign investors in Việt Nam with total investment of nearly US$25 billion, and the country’s biggest provider of non-refundable aid, while two-way trade rose five times in the 2006-17 period, exceeding $50 billion last year.
The PM held that Việt Nam and Europe are pinning high hopes on a stronger extensive partnership. The 93-million-people strong market of Việt Nam, 13 per cent of which is middle-class, has seen increasing purchasing power and strong start-up movement, he said. He stressed that Việt Nam always highly values the investment of more than 2,000 European firms in the country, especially in areas where they have advantages such as infrastructure development, seaports, airports, urban transport, energy, electricity, oil and gas, agriculture, tourism and health.
Social organisations and European partners have shown their strong capacity in environmental protection, sustainable development, renewable energy, response to climate change, smart city development, smart agriculture, sustainable tourism and high-quality human resource training, he said.
He asked leaders of ministries, sectors and localities to tackle difficulties facing European partners and enterprises in Việt Nam. He also expressed his hope that European partners will design long-term investment and business strategies in Việt Nam, thus reinforcing connectivity with their Vietnamese firms.
Miriam Garcia Ferrer, head of the Economic and Trade Section of the European Union Delegation to Việt Nam, showed her optimism about the prospect of the Việt Nam-EU trade partnership amidst increasing trade protectionism around the globe. The EU is the second-biggest export market of Việt Nam, especially for its telephones, coffee, garments and consumer goods, she said, adding that the EU is the fifth-biggest investor in Việt Nam.
Meanwhile, Co-Chair of the European Chamber of Commerce in Việt Nam (EuroCham) Nicolas Audier said that the “Meet Europe 2018” is a special event showing the unceasing efforts of EuroCham in Việt Nam in legal consultancy that have been recognised by the Vietnamese Government.
Denis Brunetti, another Co-Chair of EuroCham, said that the EU has acknowledged the Vietnamese Government’s efforts in improving legal institutions and the business environment and re-shaping the management of enterprises. Việt Nam is moving forward and needs partners supporting it in the development path, he said, pledging that European businesses will remain Việt Nam’s important partners through their investment in the Vietnamese market.
Ambassador Bruno Angelet, head of the EU Delegation to Việt Nam, said that the free trade agreement between Việt Nam and the EU will be signed later this year.
"I am strongly convinced that the FTA between the EU and Việt Nam has an enormous potential to enhance trade and investment exchanges between us and generate growth and prosperity both in the EU and in Việt Nam. This potential should be used by all companies, not only big multinationals but also small and medium enterprises, and it should bring benefits to all EU Member States and to all provinces of Việt Nam. Our first challenge is to inform everyone about the potential of the FTA,” he added.
He said that the two sides should make reforms and adjustments to seek proper measures to ensure the effective implementation of the deal.
Co-organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the People’s Committee of Hà Nội, the EU Delegation to Việt Nam and EuroCham, the conference is among the largest business-to-government events of the year, showcasing the best that European businesses have to offer. The event gathers the highest circles of the Vietnamese Government and company representatives. — VNS