The Bulgarian minister welcomed the business trip of the Ministry of Industry and Trade delegation, led by Minister Dien, to Bulgaria. He said that because of many objective reasons, since the 23rd edition was held in 2015, the 24th session of the Bulgarian-Vietnamese Intergovernmental Commission for Trade, Economic, Scientific, and Technological Cooperation was not held until this year. He hoped that through the 24th session, the two sides will have more cooperation opportunities in terms of trade, investment, economy, transportation and other fields of common concern.

Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien (left) and Bulgaria’s Minister of Economy and Industry Petko Nikolovon

Minister Dien spoke highly of the importance of this visit of the Vietnamese delegation to boost the two countries’ cooperative ties.

He emphasized that Bulgaria was among the first 10 countries recognizing and establishing diplomatic relations with Vietnam and one of the countries with strongest support to the signing of the E.U. - Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the ratification of the E.U. - Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA).

According to the Vietnamese minister, Vietnam is now one of the 40 leading economies in the world. Vietnam's annual import-export turnover has reached over USD 700 billion, and is one of the 20 countries with large trade scale in the world.

Vietnam is also one of the 15 countries with the best FDI attraction environment and the country's annual FDI attraction growth rate is 5% - 6% on average. Vietnam has an extremely open economy with 16 free trade agreements and relationships with over 70 countries and territories.

Minister Dien stressed that economic-trade-investment cooperation plays an important role in the growing Vietnam-Bulgaria relations. However, the bilateral trade relations are not commensurate with the potential of both sides.

He pointed out that Vietnam's export turnover to Bulgaria in 2023 was equal to only 0.24% of Bulgaria's imports, while Bulgaria's exports to Vietnam accounted for 0.018% of Vietnam's import turnover. According to Minister Dien, the main reason is the limited mutual understanding between businesses of the two countries, geographical distance and high transport costs.

Delegates of the two sides in a joint photo

He confirmed that there is much room for the two countries to cooperate. He invited Minister Petko Nikolov and other members of the Bulgarian ministry to visit Vietnam at the soonest time.

Concluding the meeting, Minister Petko Nikolov underlined that Bulgaria always treasures and wishes to accelerate cooperation with Vietnam in various fields, especially in economy, trade and investment with the goal of improving two-way trade volume and creating favorable conditions for the two countries’ businesses to invest in each country’s market in the fields of agriculture, pharmaceuticals, mining and energy.

He said that Bulgaria is willing to be a gateway for Vietnamese products to penetrate European market.

Translated by Chung Anh