Vietnam, EU begin new round of FTA negotiations

07/11/2013    48

Vietnam and the European Union (EU) kick-started the fifth round of their free trade agreement (FTA) negotiations in Hanoi on November 4.

Head of the European Parliamentarian delegation Werner Largen said discussions will focus on the creation of an equal playing field for State and private businesses, intellectual property rights protection, geographical indication, and sustainable development.

A European Parliament (EP) committee is expected to consider ratifying the trade pact when bilateral negotiations are concluded. The EP will issue a resolution detailing the European Union’s expectations from and requirements for Vietnam.

Vietnam and the EU are making every effort to conclude their FTA negotiations in 2014. Both sides have shown their strong political commitments towards this goal, according to Largen.

The EU is Vietnam’s biggest export market and the country’s second biggest trade partner. Bilateral trade rose sharply in the first half of this year, with Vietnamese exports increasing 25% and EU exports surging 20%.

The trade pact will help Vietnam attract more foreign investment, especially from EU countries, sharpen its economic competitive edge, create jobs, and use domestic resources more effectively.