Vietnam, Cambodia target US$5 billion in trade

08:20 | 13/01/2019 Vietnam - Asean

(VEN) - Vietnam and Cambodia are targeting bilateral trade value of US$5 billion by 2020, up more than 25 percent from its current level. The goal was agreed on during talks earlier this month between visiting Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

vietnam cambodia target us 5 billion in trade
Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen (left) and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc

Promoting bilateral trade

According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, bilateral trade reached US$3.8 billion in 2017 (up 30 percent from 2016) and more than US$3.8 billion in the first 10 months of 2018, 21 percent higher than the same period last year. It is expected to exceed US$4 billion in 2018, paving the way for US$5 billion by 2020, Prime Minister Phuc said.

As of late November, according to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, Vietnam had 210 investment projects totaling more than US$3 billion in registered capital in Cambodia, mostly in the fields of agriculture, banking, telecommunications and information technology, industrial production, processing and manufacturing, trade, health, energy and construction.

Linking the two economies

Prime Minister Hun Sen and his Vietnamese counterpart also agreed on major orientations to promote bilateral relations further. Prime Minister Phuc said Vietnam attaches much importance to prioritizing economic cooperation with Cambodia with the motto of innovation, breakthroughs, and practical and efficient cooperation.

Phuc proposed that the two countries implement their framework agreement on connecting the two economies, signed in 2017, link transport, electricity, tourism, telecommunications and banking activities, and put into operation a model border market in Da Commune in Menot District of Cambodia’s Tbong Khmum Province, adjacent to Tan Lap Border Crossing in Vietnam’s southern province of Tay Ninh. Phuc also proposed that the two sides facilitate connectivity between border crossings, and realize the “one stop - one inspection” model at Vietnam’s Moc Bai Border Crossing and Cambodia’s Bavet Border Crossing.

The two government leaders agreed to coordinate closely to match Cambodia’s quadrangle development strategy and create favorable conditions to increase Vietnamese investment in Cambodia, and vice versa. During the visit, Vietnamese Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh and Cambodian Minister of Commerce Pan Sorasak signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the completion of negotiations on an agreement to facilitate bilateral border trade.

The two prime ministers witnessed the signing of four other cooperation agreements, including a government-level memorandum of understanding (MoU) on transport cooperation strategy for the 2018-2025 period with a vision to 2030. The other MoUs relate to the completion of 84 percent of the border demarcation and future work plans, and an agreement on a project using Vietnam’s non-refundable aid to build the community-based voluntary drug detoxification center in Cambodia’s Preah Sihanouk Province.

Thu Phuong