HÀ NỘI – Việt Nam attaches importance to its role as a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), stated Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc at his reception for WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo in Hà Nội yesterday.
Welcoming the WTO leader’s visit to Việt Nam, PM Phúc stressed that this was a good chance for the WTO leader and Vietnamese officials to discuss increasing co-operation between the two sides.
Confirming Việt Nam’s policy of extensive international integration, he said that Việt Nam had negotiated and signed several bilateral and regional free trade agreements and actively participated in WTO activities.
He informed the guest of the country’s ratification of a Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) as well as its preparations to ratify a protocol amending the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) in October.
The Government leader expressed his hope that the WTO would continue supporting Việt Nam, particularly in the training of skilled human resources and legal experts, and in improving the capacity of Vietnamese businesses in international trade activities.
The WTO Director-General said that Việt Nam had great potential for further development as an active member of the WTO.
The Vietnamese economy was growing with an increasing level of quality through the rise of hi-tech industries, he said.
He suggested Việt Nam contribute to building the WTO’s future working agenda as a way to heighten its role and position in the organisation.
The guest called for a step up in cooperation with Việt Nam, particularly in capacity building and training for personnel working for international integration.
He welcomed Việt Nam’s preparations for ratifying TRIPS, saying this important document was tailored to help less-developed countries access pharmaceuticals for medical treatment.
The WTO Director-General affirmed that the WTO was willing to support Việt Nam in its integration into the global multilateral trade system, as well as during its socio-economic development process.
Việt Nam had made good use of opportunities brought about by the country’s membership of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), said Azevêdo later at a dialogue with Vietnamese businesses yesterday.
The WTO Director-General said Việt Nam was among the members having benefited the most from the WTO, earning around US$3.6 billion as a result of WTO assistance.
He underlined the remarkable changes in Việt Nam both before and after it joined the WTO, citing noteworthy trade liberalisation, lower taxes and positive reforms in the service sector. The enforcement and protection of intellectual property had also been improved clearly, he said, adding that the Vietnamese Government had taken steps to modernize the economy and create a more attractive and favourable business environment.
With all those moves, Việt Nam enhanced its prestige among the international business community, which it would not have achieved without joining the WTO, Azevêdo said. He added that WTO membership also helped Việt Nam avoid trade protection measures and non-trade barriers that are on the rise.
Sharing this view, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade, Trần Quốc Khánh, reported that Việt Nam’s foreign trade value had risen threefold since its WTO accession, while substantial changes had been seen in the country’s institutional environment.
Chairman of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Vũ Tiến Lộc, affirmed that accession to the WTO forced Việt Nam to follow world standards.
According to the WTO Director General, Việt Nam is on the right track in the process of international integration and trade liberalisation. He appreciated Việt Nam’s efforts in joining regional and bilateral free trade agreements alongside the multilateral trade institution of the WTO.
Multilateral and bilateral mechanisms would supplement each other and assist with Việt Nam’s integration process, he said, adding that there is no other choice for Viêt Nam than to strive to meet world trade standards. — VNS