Hanoi (VNA) – Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son received a delegation of the EU-ASEAN Business Council (EU-ABC) and the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham) in Hanoi on February 15, affirming that his ministry will actively work with other ministries and sectors to promote bilateral trade and investment links.
Stressing the importance Vietnam attaches to relations with the EU, the host official expressed his delight that the two sides’ comprehensive partnership and cooperation have been flourishing.
He appreciated the assistance the EU and its member state had given to Vietnam’s socio-economic development.
The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) has been implemented for more than two years, creating an impulse for bilateral trade and encouraging EU businesses to expand investment in Vietnam, he went on, adding that the EU is currently the fifth largest trading and investment partner of the Southeast Asian country.
With regard to the cooperation between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the EU, Son said Vietnam always supports their strategic partnership, suggesting the two regions maximise the cooperation potential in trade, investment, digital transformation, green industry, energy transition, and climate change response.
The minister highly valued the role of the EU-ABC and EuroCham as bridges for European businesses’ cooperation with ASEAN and Vietnam.
He asked the EU-ABC and EuroCham to continue supporting Vietnam and the EU to effectively carry out the EVFTA to capitalise on advantages created by the deal; promote EU members’ ratification of the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA); identify cooperation priorities in the fields matching the EU’s strength and Vietnam’s demand like climate change response, energy transition, circular economy, transport, and aviation; and encourage European firms to make green growth investments in Vietnam.
On behalf of the EU-ABC and EuroCham, EU-ABC Vice Chairman Jens Ruebbert, who is also Managing Director & Regional Head Asia/Pacific at Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg, applauded the progress in the ASEAN-EU and Vietnam-EU relations, noting that the EU-ABC and EuroCham have been making unceasing efforts to connect European companies with ASEAN countries, including Vietnam.
He shared the view that the EVFTA and EVIPA are important driving forces for bilateral economic, trade, and investment ties in the coming time.
The EU-ABC and EuroCham will stand side by side with the Vietnamese Government in promoting ASEAN-EU and Vietnam-EU economic cooperation priorities, and encourage European firms to increase investment and business in the country, Ruebbert added.
At the meeting, Minister Son stated the Vietnamese Government will create the best possible conditions for foreign investors, including those from Europe.