Vietnam has plenty of opportunities for exporting its key items- garments and textiles, footwear, wood furniture and agro-fisheries products to Australia, reported the Voice of Vietnam, reported the Voice of Vietnam.
Vietnam and Australia established formal diplomatic relations on February 26, 1973. Over the past four decades, especially since the relationship was upgraded to a comprehensive partnership in 2009, bilateral ties have developed comprehensively both in breadth and depth across a variety of fields.
In particular, economic, trade and investment cooperation has become one of the important pillars in the bilateral relations.
Bilateral cooperation takes place in some main areas: economic growth, trade and industry development; development assistance; and defence, law enforcement and security ties.
Bilateral trade volume increased from US$3.3 billion in 1990 to US$6 billion in 2014. Australian direct investment in Vietnam jumped to US$1.65 billion last year. Vietnam is Australia’s fastest growing trade partner among all ASEAN countries.
Australia is currently the 8th biggest export market and the 11th largest importer of Vietnam.
In 2014 alone, Vietnamese exports to Australia surged nearly 14% to US$4 billion over one year earlier. Vietnam was Australia’s 14th trade partner. The country enjoyed a trade surplus of US$1.9 billion with Australia in 2014.
According to Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh, Vietnam and Australia are having advantages for promoting economic and trade links in the future.
“Bilateral trade has grown considerably since the two countries signed the Australia- New Zealand- ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in 2009, delivering substantial and practical benefits to both sides. With high levels of technological advances and capital resources, Australia is regarded as an important partner of Vietnam at present and the time to come.” Tuan Anh said.
As of 2014, Australia had in excess of 320 valid direct investment projects in Vietnam with a total registered capital of US$1.65 billion.
Currently, Australia ranks 19th out of 101 countries and territories investing in the Southeast Asian nation with a focus on energy, construction, service, education, agriculture, forestry and fisheries.
Vietnam Ambassador to Australia Luong Thanh Nghi said more and more Vietnamese businesses show a keen interest in investing in Australia. In turn, Vietnam is offering more favourable conditions for foreign firms including those from Australia to do business.
However, Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Vietnam (VCCI) Chairman Vu Tien Loc said the Vietnam-Australia trade and investment cooperation is still below their full potential and expectation.
In the future, the two sides should maximize joint efforts to create an open investment environment for enterprises by removing or loosening trade barriers to help products from the two nations achieve greater market penetration, the VCCI leader said.
Loc emphasized, "Australia has a developed market economy and is intensifying the integration process. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) participation will help open up a more favourable investment environment of Australia for Vietnamese enterprises.
Vietnam is engaging in new generation free trade agreements (FTAs) and embarking on strong institutional reforms. The two governments are making breakthroughs in improving the business environment. As a result, Vietnamese and Australian businesses will further boost investment cooperation in the time ahead.”
Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Tuan Anh said by participating in the TPP Agreement, Vietnam will have numerous advantages for expanding export markets to TPP members including Australia with products of its strength like garments and textiles, footwear, wood furniture and agro- fisheries products.
“Both nations should simplify market access procedures and remove most tariff barriers to facilitate the market opening of TPP members as well as their partners. If Vietnam succeeds in its TPP negotiations, the country will be able to enjoy more better conditions for market access to TPP members including Australia, thus creating two-digit growth for key goods, " the Deputy Minister noted.
Vietnam and Australia are working together to deepen the comprehensive partnership and build an action program for the period 2015-2017 in a bid to augment bilateral economic cooperation. With the combined efforts and determination, Vietnam -Australia economic and trade cooperation will grow and flourish in line with their expectation./.
( VNF )