During the 4th session of a trade working group within the framework of the Ministerial-level Vietnam - Australia Economic Partnership Meeting, the two sides focused on reviewing the implementation of cooperation contents agreed at the 3rd session and discussed issues related to regional and multilateral cooperation, as well as supply chain cooperation.

Participants at the meeting (Photo: The Ministry of Industry and Trade)

Both sides expressed their delight at the impressive growth of bilateral trade recently. Australia became the 7th largest trade partner of Vietnam in 2022 with two-way trade hitting 15.7 billion USD.

The positive results were attributed to efforts of both sides in promoting economic and trade cooperation, fully tapping free trade agreements (FTAs). They include the Agreement Establishing the ASEAN - Australia - New Zealand Free Trade Area (AANZFTA), the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). They have also implemented flexible policies of the two governments and relevant ministries.

The two sides agreed to speed up the implementation of important cooperation, towards further promoting the bilateral trade ties in a balanced and sustainable manner, thus matching the strategic partnership between the two nations.

Accordingly, the two sides will continue to promote market opening and facilitation to the export of Vietnam's agricultural products such as passion fruit, pomelo, and fresh flowers. On the other side, honey, and reindeer and kangaroo meat will come from the Australian side.

Attention will be paid to boosting technical and investment cooperation in the field of agriculture; sharing experience in trade promotion, supply chain and transportation; and pushing the signing of a protocol amending the Vietnam - Australia aviation agreement.

The discussion and proposals at the event are aimed at bringing practical benefits to the business community of both sides, contributing to developing regional and global value chains, supporting post-pandemic economic recovery, building a rules-based multilateral trading system, and promoting regional economic integration.

The two sides highly valued efforts by their relevant agencies in bolstering cooperation within EEES, especially in organizing periodical dialogues on trade remedies.

The two memoranda of understanding (MOU) on establishing a ministerial-level dialogue mechanism on trade, energy, and minerals between Vietnam and Australia, which is expected to be inked in 2023, will create an important exchange channel for government agencies and the business community to expand cooperation activities in these areas.

The contents discussed and agreed upon at the session will be submitted to the Ministerial-level Vietnam - Australia Economic Partnership Meeting, which is slated for mid-April this year.

Statistics from the Ministry of Industry and Trade show that two-way trade between Vietnam and Australia hit 2 billion USD in the first two months of 2023. Vietnam earned 769.4 million USD from exporting goods to Australia, while spending 1.2 billion USD on imports from the country.

Source: VNA