|At the signing ceremony of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership in Hanoi on November 15, 2020 (Photo: VOV)
According to Tran Tuan Anh, Chairman of the Party Central Committee’s Economic Commission, by the signing and implementing these new-generation FTAs, Vietnam has demonstrated its commitment to international integration and affirming a new role, image, prestige, and position in the international arena.
He said, “Vietnam used to be merely a participant in integration frameworks like the World Trade Organization and the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement, but it now has become a leader in making multilateral free trade agreements a success. The CPTPP, the EVFTA, and RCEP, for example, have demonstrated Vietnam’s leadership and presented a new image of Vietnam with greater capacity, responsibility, and decisiveness.”
Implementing a series of new-generation FTAs has helped Vietnam achieve the world’s 22nd largest export turnover and attract hundreds of billions of dollars in foreign direct investment (FDI).
Vietnam’s international economic integration through negotiation, signing, and implementing bilateral and multilateral FTAs has dramatically improved the competitiveness of its economy and businesses.
Nguyen Thi Huyen, Director of the Vietnam Staraniseed Cassia Production and Export Company (Vina Samex), attributes these achievements in part to the great contributions and careful preparations of Vietnam’s business community.
“The EU is our target market. Since 2013, thanks to catching the trend of international markets, and the European market in particular, we’ve built a value chain and controlled our raw material area from plantation to production to export. We’ve received many international certifications, including Europe’s certificate of food safety and the fair trade certificate,” said Huyen.
Economist Dr. Nguyen Dinh Cung, former Director of the Central Institute for Economic Management, said that to leverage these results, its important to focus on building a community of strong businesses.
According to Cung, “An integration strategy doesn’t mean just signing agreements. It’s necessary to develop teams of personnel in charge of integration. These are businesses. The first thing we must think about is making Vietnamese businesses stronger, which requires reform and change. In order to import more advanced technologies, we need businesses competent at transferring of technology.”
Luong Hoang Thai, Director of the Multilateral Trade Policy Department of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, said, “The first step in Vietnam’s integration initiative is signing and implementing FTAs. The next priority is to prepare for higher quality domestic development and better connection of the domestic economy with our international economic integration.”
The 13th Party Congress Resolution has underscored the importance of taking the initiative in international integration in a comprehensive and effective manner to the national development orientation from now until 2030.