Report: "Vietnam after two years of EVFTA implementation from a business perspective"

14/11/2022

Time: 11/2022

By: Center for WTO and International Trade - VCCI

As the first Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Vietnam and the European Union (EU), the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) is likened to an important highway connecting Vietnam's economy with EU 27 economies. This is also a new generation FTA, the second highest standard that Vietnam has signed, with commitments covering many fields, a strong degree of liberalization and a higher level of commitment than most of the existing FTAs ​​of Vietnam. Therefore, EVFTA is assessed to bring significant and positive impacts to Vietnam's economy and institutions.

Up to now, EVFTA has been in effect for more than 2 years. This is a pivotal period for the implementation of any FTA. For EVFTA, most of the commitments of this Agreement have begun to be implemented in practice, including commitments on tariffs, service market opening, investment, public procurement and rules commitments in many fields during these two years.

After two years, from a macro perspective, statistics on trade and investment between Vietnam and the EU as well as summaries of the law-making work to implement EVFTA commitments in Vietnam have been published. Meanwhile, from the perspective of enterprises, except for the single cases identified/stated as examples, there is almost no overview information on the implementation of EVFTA by specific enterprises, especially micro, small and medium enterprises.

In order to find answers to questions about how Vietnamese businesses understand the Agreement, how have they taken advantages of the opportunities it presented, what is preventing them from accessing the supposedly significant opportunities from this Agreement or the enactment of legislation implementing the Agreement affecting how do businesses take advantage of opportunities from the Agreement,....The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Center for WTO and International Trade) conducted a Research Report on "Vietnam after two years of EVFTA implementation from a business perspective"

Objectives of the Report are to provide an overview of the two-year implementation of EVFTA from an enterprise perspective, and at the same time identify the realities of enterprises' specific capacities, activities, feelings and desires. All of this is to give opinions on necessary policies to the Government and competent agencies to effectively implement the EVFTA in the near future.

The report is made on the basis of (i) Results of a survey of enterprises conducted between May and August 2022 on aspects related to the practical implementation of EVFTA and other FTAs ​​and (ii)) Results of a detailed review of legal documents implementing EVFTA issued up to this point. In order to provide an overall picture as a basis for comparing and interpreting information from the Survey and Review, the Report also analyzes statistics on the general situation of trade and investment between Vietnam and EVFTA partners, the development of legislation to implement EVFTA in 2020 and 2022.

The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry would like to thank the support of the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom (Germany) in the research and publication of this Report.

The copy of the Report is attached below: