|Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh says the primary goal of international economic integration in the time to come for Vietnam is to accelerate implementation of free trade agreements (FTAs). (Photo: VGP)
Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh made the suggestion at a working session of the Inter-sectoral Steering Committee for International Economic Integration in Hanoi on July 20.
Minh, who is also head of the steering committee, said during the previous phase of international economic integration, Vietnam has successfully speeded up the signing, ratification and effective implementation of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), as well as ratification of the European Union – Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).
It has also promoted Vietnam’s role as ASEAN Chair 2020 in implementing the ASEAN Economic Community and economic connectivity between ASEAN and partners, actively participating in and actively contributing to multilateral mechanisms such as the United Nations, the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC), the Asia-Europe Summit (ASEM), and the Mekong sub-region cooperation...
With a total of 16 FTAs under implementation and negotiations, Vietnam has become the focal point of the vast free trade area network that accounts for 59% of the world’s population and 68% of global trade, helping increase the country’s interests with most of the leading partners regionally and globally.
According to Deputy PM Pham Binh Minh, the highest goal of international economic integration in the time to come is to serve economic recovery and promote growth and sustainable development.
In the new phase, the primary focus should be on the effective implementation and utilization of opportunities from free trade agreements, especially the CPTPP, EVFTA, and ASEAN agreements with partners, Minh said.
It is imperative to encourage the business community and craft associations to fulfil commitments and propose solutions to improve the competitiveness of businesses and industries, as well as to support businesses in trade defense. At the same time, relevant ministries and sectors should proactively devise appropriate plans to speed up negotiations of additional FTAs and promote market and partnership diversification in the context of the COVID-19 epidemic.
The Deputy Prime Minister requested that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Industry and Trade and relevant ministries and agencies work closely together to successfully implement ASEAN integration tasks in 2020, helping elevate Vietnam’s international prestige and position in putting forward initiatives and realizing the ASEAN Community Vision 2025.
In addition, he said the designated ministries and agencies should foster Vietnam’s active role in and contributions to multilateral economic cooperation mechanisms such as APEC and WTO.