Vietnamese Ambassador to Belgium Nguyen Van Thao (second from left), who is also head of the Mission of Vietnam to the EU, speaks at the seminar in Brussels on October 9. (Photo: VNA)
The event, discussing the Vietnam - EU trade ties and the role of EuroCham, was attended by over 40 guests, including leaders of EuroCham, relevant agencies of the EU and Belgium, and representatives of some big European businesses operating in the Southeast Asian country like LEGO, Pharma Group, DEPR Vietnam, and Equinor.
Stressing the vigorous growth of the Vietnam - EU relations, Vietnamese Ambassador to Belgium Nguyen Van Thao, who is also head of the Mission of Vietnam to the EU, said opportunities for intensive and extensive cooperation are now in place, but much potential remains untapped.
As a major association of European enterprises and with big capital, high technology and rich experience, EuroCham has a crucial role to play in promoting Vietnam - EU economic partnerships. Vietnam needs assistance, experience and vision shared by, and close coordination from EuroCham to jointly grasp chances and boost mutually beneficial cooperation, he noted.
Calling on EuroCham to work with Vietnam to step up some important issues, Thao said that once ratified, the EU - Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA) will generate benefits for European investors in the country. He appealed to EuroCham to raise a stronger voice to advocate the early ratification of the EVIPA by the remaining member countries.
The Vietnamese Government always creates the best possible conditions for foreign investors, he affirmed.
With regard to the EU’s “yellow card” warning against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, the diplomat highlighted Vietnam’s determination to carry out the EU’s recommendations.
He emphasised that the “yellow card” affects not only Vietnam’s aquatic exports, interests of the EU’s trading businesses and consumers, but also the investment and business climate in Vietnam, which will subsequently impact European firms.
As EU enterprises have a considerable voice in this regard, the ambassador called on them to coordinate with Vietnam to work for the European Commission’s removal of the “yellow card”.
Mentioning the EU’s new policies such as the EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) and the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM), he said those policies will influence both Vietnamese and EU enterprises, and that Vietnam is ready to cooperate with and hopes the EU will maintain dialogue, boost technical and financial support, and help with capacity building for the country.
Chairman of EuroCham Vietnam Gabor Fluit (second from right) at the seminar (Photo: VNA)Agreeing with Vietnam’s proposals, EuroCham leaders and business representatives said the country is important to the EU. They noted that during meetings with EuroCham, relevant agencies of the EU have underlined the stature and cooperation potential of Vietnam.
EuroCham leaders highly valued the two sides’ establishment of solid cooperation frameworks, especially such important deals as the EU - Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), which have created a strong impetus for comprehensive and effective economic ties.
EuroCham will keep close coordination with Vietnam to seize new opportunities and expand cooperation in important fields such as clean energy, pharmaceutical, modern agriculture, green finance, and logistics, they added.
They said EuroCham will work closely with Vietnam to raise a stronger voice towards EU agencies and member countries.
Chairman of EuroCham Vietnam Gabor Fluit shared the view that the EVIPA ratification, the IUU “yellow card” removal, and the implementation of new policies will help Vietnam further integrate into and join sustainable supply chains, and bring about benefits for EU firms operating in the country.
He also proposed Vietnam continue supporting EU enterprises and further improve the investment and business climate to attract high-quality investments, including those from the EU.
At the seminar, representatives of EU companies also spoke highly of Vietnam’s policies towards sustainable development./.VNA