Speaking at the event co-organized by the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade, and the EU Delegation to Vietnam, Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien said that over the past more than two years since the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) took effect, the two sides have witnessed fluctuations of the global economy as well as the economies of the EU and Vietnam amid the Covid-19 pandemic, regional and global geo-political instability.
Data from the General Department of Vietnam Customs showed that the EU is now a leading trade partner, the third biggest export market and the fifth largest import market of Vietnam. Meanwhile, Vietnam surpassed Singapore to become the biggest trade partner of the EU in ASEAN and the world's 11th biggest supplier of goods to the bloc.
From August 2021 to July 2022, two-way trade between Vietnam and the EU reached US$61.4 billion, up 11.9 percent from the first year of EVFTA enforcement. Of which, Vietnam shipped $45 billion worth of products to the EU, up 17 percent.
In the first eight months of this year, the figure hit $42.4 billion, marking a 14.85 percent rise year-on-year. Vietnam mainly exported machinery, garment and footwear, coffee, aquatic products, fruits and vegetables, pepper and rice to the EU.
Dien added that the Vietnamese Government is keen on expanding the markets and boosting its comprehensive partnership with the EU and its member states, thus making it easier to expand bilateral ties, not only in trade but also other economic areas.
Chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham) Alain Cany said in order to be able to compete in the EU and fully tap advantages from the signed FTAs, Vietnamese enterprises need to comply with strict environment standards and meet demands for green and sustainable consumption trend, which is inevitable in the world and a mandatory path for them to deeply join the new value chain.
The EU encourages the development of green and renewable energy sources in Vietnam, he said, adding that European firms want to be present in Vietnam to share their experience, technology and investment.