Ample room remains for Vietnam’s exports to EU

There is still a lot of room for Vietnamese goods to expand their presence in the European Union (EU) market, but accessing its retail distribution systems is extremely important, heard a seminar in Ho Chi Minh City on August 11.

Speaking at the event, held to support domestic enterprises to connect with EU’s distribution systems, Nguyen Thao Hien, deputy head of the European-American Market Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, noted that the year 2022 is favourable for export and trade promotion activities with the EU partners, as both sides are recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic with great support from the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).

Two years since the agreement took effect, the EVFTA does not only promote bilateral trade but also provides an advantage for the business communities of both sides in the context of fluctuating markets and the impact of the pandemic, as well as regional and global geopolitical uncertainties.

According to Hien, the ability of businesses to take advantage of incentives from the agreement is also gradually improving after two years.

Statistics from the MoIT showed that the rate of enterprises using preferential certificates of origin under the EVFTA agreement reached 20.7% in the second year compared with 14.8% in the first year.

However, it should be noted that many Vietnamese products still face various difficulties in accessing the EU market because they have not fully met its requirements in terms of technical standards, traceability, environmental and sustainable development issues, she said. 

Trade promotion activities have not been carried out concertedly from production, marketing and market penetration, Hien said.

Nguyen Thi Hoang Thuy, Trade Counsel of Vietnam in Sweden, said room remains for Vietnam’s exports to the EU, especially Northern Europe, as the population there, small as it is, is among the group with the highest average income in the world with an annual import demand of about US$400 billion.

Vu Anh Son, in charge of the trade office in France, said bringing goods into foreign distribution channels requires businesses to have a long-term orientation and production plan, adding that in addition to complying with regulations and standards of the market, they must also meet the individual requirements of each distributor.

Khiem Nhat Thanh, General Director of T&T Food, an importer for distribution systems in France, said businesses wishing to conquer the EU market should have specific and long-term marketing plans and strategies along with securing qualified products.

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