Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) heralds new chapter for Vietnam -EU relations

January 30, 2019 - 06:33
Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) heralds new chapter for Vietnam -EU relations

HANOI, VIETNAM - Media OutReach - 28 January2019 - The European Union − Vietnam Free TradeAgreement (EVFTA), which is heading to the European Council and Parliament forthe final approval necessary for it to come into force, brings unprecedentedadvantages and benefits for Vietnam and the EU.

British PrimeMinister's Trade Envoy to Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the Rt Hon Edward VaizeyMP, and economistAlessandra Bonfiglioli, from the School of Economics and Finance of Queen MaryUniversity of London (QMUL)* give their views on the many opportunities theEVFTA is expected to bring to both parties.

Onthe potential impacts of EVFTA on EU economy:


  • The biggest impact will bethe elimination of customs duties on goods traded between the EU andVietnam.
  • 65% of import duties from the EU toVietnam will be eliminated immediately, with the remainder being removedover the next 10 years.
  • For Vietnam,the implementation of the principles ofthe International Labour Foundation and the Paris Agreementare also an important step.


The EU will definitely benefit from better market access in theVietnamese market, and to a larger extent than Vietnamese firms in their accessto the EU. The reason is that, while the EVFTA will reduce tariffs on goods by 99% bilaterally, as a matter of fact,many Vietnamese products have been already enjoying trade preferences offeredunilaterally by the EU under the General Scheme of Preferences (GSP). Thesectors benefitting the most in the EU will be those producing machineries,vehicles and pharmaceuticals

Moreover, the agreement grants the protection of GeographicalIndications, such as those of Champagne, Parmigiano Reggiano and Feta cheeses,and many more (there are 169 such traditional European food and drinksproducts). Considering that the spectacular growth performance of Vietnam isbound to increase the demand for these products, the EU agricultural sector isexpected to seize relevant benefits.

The EVFTA will grant European companies better access to theVietnamese public procurement markets than companies from any other country.This means that they will be able to bid for public contracts, for instance ininfrastructures, which are worth billions of Euros.

For the full press release with reasons why Vietnam is chosen and envisaging the UK-Vietnam FTA when UKleaves the EU please see