Thursday, August 13 2020

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Trade defence instruments important to Việt Nam’s open economy

Update: May, 14/2020 - 09:36

 

Production of colour coated rolled steel. Trade defence measures which had been or were being imposed helped protect jobs for about 120,000 labourers, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade. — Photo tapchicongthuong.vn

HÀ NỘI — Strengthening the application of trade defence instruments would be necessary for Việt Nam, which was among countries with the highest economic openness level, according to the Ministry of Industry and Trade.

Việt Nam established free trade relations with 55 countries through the signing of 14 free trade agreements (FTAs), 13 of which were already in force, including the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

With nearly all tariffs lifted under commitments of the 13 in-effect FTAs, Việt was now among countries with the highest economic openness level, the ministry said, adding that there were also challenges to sustainable development.

Despite roadmaps for opening the economy, local production was facing growing competition from imported products. Việt Nam’s exported products also encountered the increasing application of trade defence measures by foreign countries.

Lê Triệu Dũng, director of the ministry’s Trade Remedies Authority of Việt Nam, said that Việt Nam developed a legal framework on trade defence 15 years ago, before the country’s participation in the World Trade Organisation. However, the application of trade defence measures only became common in the last five years in Việt Nam.

According to Dũng, trade defence measures which had been or were being imposed helped protect jobs for about 120,000 labourers, encourage local production and contribute to the balance of international payment.

It was estimated that production sectors which were protected by trade defence measures contributed around 6.3 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product. In addition, the budget revenue also increased as higher import tariffs were imposed.

Of note, Dũng said that the application of trade defence measures would not only protect local production and domestic jobs but also help reduce the dependence on imported products.

Dũng said the ministry was keeping a close watch on price developments and imports as well as carrying out reviews to consider the imposition of appropriate trade defence measures to protect the legitimate rights of domestic producers based on the principles of transparency and compliance with Việt Nam’s legal provisions and international commitments.

Dũng said that FTAs all aimed at trade liberalisation but the tariff liberalisation following FTAs would require trade defence measures.

The ministry’s statistics showed that since 2013, investigations for trade defence measures were initiated on 16 cases, including 10 anti-dumping and six safeguard probes. The ministry issued 13 decisions for the imposition of trade defence instruments, mainly on steel and iron, fertiliser, plastics, textiles and food.

Thee major trade defence measures were anti-dumping, anti-subsidy and safeguard ones. — VNS

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