In a recent interview granted to the press, he noted the country has signed and implemented 15 FTAs, becoming an important link in global supply chains.

Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien

A special highlight last year was that amid the complex COVID-19 pandemic, the participation in FTAs, especially new-generation ones like the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the E.U. - Vietnam FTA (EVFTA), and the U.K. - Vietnam FTA (UKVFTA), has helped the Southeast Asian nation secure impressive export growth and partly mitigate the pandemic’s adverse impacts on its economy.

Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien cited data from the General Department of Vietnam Customs that in the first eight months of 2022, exports to other CPTPP members reached some 41 billion USD, up 38.7% year on year. Shipments to the E.U. also increased 24.2% to over 32 billion USD.

Meanwhile, Vietnam’s exports to other members of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement hit 108.48 billion USD in the first nine months of 2022, rising 16.4% from a year earlier.

With this upward trend, the implementation of FTAs will continue generating fruitful results for Vietnam in 2023, especially when it comes to potential markets, the official opined.

In particular, the RCEP will bring about long-term benefits as it will help form stable export markets for Vietnamese goods and facilitate the development of new regional supply chains so that the country can engage more deeply in regional and global supply chains, he added.

However, opportunities for capitalizing on preferential treatment under the FTAs have yet to be truly balanced between domestic and FDI businesses. Many key exports of Vietnam haven’t solved their origin-related issues so as to benefit from preferential tariffs. The building of brands for “Made-in-Vietnam” products in demanding markets like the E.U. is also a matter needing more attention.

Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien said that in 2023, the world is likely to continue witnessing changes in the goods, financial, and monetary markets. However, thanks to new-generation FTAs, it is hopeful that state agencies and enterprises will continue to work together in addressing difficulties. The idea is to maintain FTAs as a driver for exports and to help Vietnamese goods gain a foothold in global markets.

Source: VNA