EU warns FTA means VN reform



HA NOI (VNS) — Once the Viet Nam-EU free trade agreement (FTA) is signed, Viet Nam will need to renovate its economic policies and institutions and be prepared for agreement enforcement, said Danish Ambassador to Vietnam John Nielsen yesterday.


Speaking at a workshop on the FTA, jointly held by the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM) and the Danish Embassy, Nielsen said that challenges accompanied the agreement, including requirements to improve product quality, competitiveness and the business and investment climate.

CIEM Director Nguyen Dinh Cung said the benefits brought by FTAs depended heavily on policy and institutional reforms. These would turn challenges into opportunities and opportunities into benefits.

Cung said Viet Nam had to modify its policies, mechanisms and institutions to increase the positive impacts of the agreement and reduce negative impacts.

Delegates shared international experience in renovating institutions and adjusting policies learned by developing countries when enforcing FTAs.

Viet Nam and the EU started negotiations on the agreement in June, 2012, and have so far undergone 12 rounds of discussions. Along with tariff cuts and trade facilitation, commitments include investment, the environment, competition and sustainable development.

The FTA between Viet Nam and the EU, once signed, could help expand Viet Nam's GDP by 7-8 per cent by 2025. Viet Nam's exports to the EU are likely to increase by 10 per cent. — VNS

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