Vietnam-EU FTA: Opportunities and challenges11/10/2013 935
Green growth and sustainable business is an important chapter in negotiations of the Vietnam-EU free trade agreement (FTA), Jacques Bouflet, Minister Counsellor and Head of the trade and economic affairs section at the Delegation of the EU to Vietnam said.
EU is a large importer of agricultural products from Vietnamincluding coffee, seafood, wood products. When this FTA was clinched, Vietnam’s agro products can deeply penetrate into EU market and fetch high earnings to Vietnam’s exporters.
However, Vietnam’s agro exporters have to face major difficulties in meeting with EU’s stiff regulations on sustainability, labeling, environmental protection, green products.
In addition, EU consumers pay attention to products’ quality, certificate of food safety and hygiene, and good aquaculture. While some of Vietnam’s agro-product exports are unable to match immediately EU’s demands in hygiene, quality and appearance.
Vietnam needs to establish an agency which is in charge of managing food safety to help Vietnam’s exporters meet EU’s requirements and save administrative costs for them. Currently, exported agro products are controlled by different agencies, leading to overlapping management and araising more costs for exporters, said Mr. Gabor Fluit, Chairman of the Food, Agri, Aqua Sector Committee (FAASC) under the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam.
To take full advantage of this FTA, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) should build a development strategy for Vietnam’s agro products in EU. Beside, MARD also develops subsidiary industries, encourages local exporters to obey strictly EU’s regulations. The Ministry encourages local enterprises to develop production chain, green agriculture, and strengthens close link between farmers and exporters, intensifies associations’ role in establishing agro products distribution centers in EU.
Vietnam is promoting the project of establishing the distribution centre of agro, forestry and fishery products in Belgiumwhich is a foundation for Vietnam to export more seafood to Belgium and other markets in EU region.
Source: Pangasius Vietnam