This message was put out by Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Le Danh Vinh at a conference in Hanoi on July 28 under the theme ‘Using trade remedy measures to protect domestic production against imported goods’.
The conference was co-organized by the Vietnam Competition Authority and the Multilateral Trade Assistance Project to provide Vietnamese business circles with information about using trade remedies in direct and indirect connection with each industry.
Mr Vinh pointed to the fact that Vietnamese businesses and their associations still have limited knowledge of procedures in using these tools to safeguard legitimate rights and interests against unfair competition from imports.
Meanwhile, Vietnamese businesses have encountered a series of anti-dumping and anti-subsidy lawsuits filed by foreign businesses.
When penetrating the Vietnamese market, foreign companies will not exclude unfair competitive operations such as dumping and selling subsidized goods, thus threatening the survival of domestic enterprises.
Vu Ba Phu, Vice Head of the Vietnam Competition Authority, said trade remedies must comply with WTO agreements on antidumping, antisubsidy and safeguards.
Of these above tools, safeguards are employed by importing countries when the volume or turnover of foreign goods surges in a very short time, to prevent a possible serious impact on domestic industries that manufacture similar products.
This is a temporary measure to protect domestic manufacturing when competitiveness from domestic products is lower than that from imports.
The duration of application for this method is four years for the first time and six years for the second time in developing countries (four years for the second time in developed countries).
Antidumping and antisubsidy are usually applied for a five-year duration and can be extended if investigations prove that imported goods continue to be dumped or subsidized by their respective government.
In recent years, Vietnamese exporters have integrated deeper into international economic activities and have ‘become acquainted’ with trade remedy cases from the foreign side. Many of these cases have exerted a great impact on Vietnam’s socio-economic situation such as leather-capped shoes and bicycles shipped to the EU or tra-basa fish and frozen shrimp exported to the US.
Lawyers from foreign legal companies such as Baker&McKenzie and Gide Louyrette have provided Vietnamese enterprises with experience in and knowledge of the trade remedy investigation process of foreign investigating agencies as well as the preparation of files and documents for initiating such investigations.