08:36 | 06/08/2018 Cooperation
(VEN) - As founding members of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), Vietnamese and Chilean businesses will have many opportunities to exploit each other’s markets and further boost bilateral trade.
The Vietnam-Chile Free Trade Agreement (VCFTA), that took effect in 2014, has been contributing to economic relations between the two countries. However, bilateral trade remains incommensurate with the potential, reaching only US$1.28 billion in 2017, representing just 0.2 percent of Vietnam’s foreign trade. Ministry of Industry and Trade data show that in the first half of 2018, bilateral trade hit US$607 million, including US$448 million in Vietnamese exports and US$159 million in Chilean exports.
At the recent Chile-Vietnam Economic Forum in Santiago de Chile, Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue said the two countries can cooperate and invest in many non-mutual-competition areas. Chile can enhance the export of wine, copper, raw materials, and fine art and handicraft articles; participate in farm produce production and processing chains; and invest in the renewable energy sector. Chilean enterprises can enhance the import of citrus fruits, electronic components, and mechanical products from Vietnam.
As founding members of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), Vietnamese and Chilean businesses can also connect to markets in ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) member states and in Latin America.
In order to boost bilateral trade, the two governments have reviewed VCFTA implementation in the 2016-2018 period, and strengthened the agreement’s promotion among business communities, with priority given to trade promotion. The two sides agreed to promote investment in the fields, in which they are strong and have a large development demand, such as mining and high-tech agriculture, to make good use of opportunities offered by the CPTPP agreement signed earlier this year and scheduled to enter into force soon.
Subcommittees on trade in goods of the two sides have agreed to exchange information related to the application of VCFTA-based tariffs from 2018-2022, and consider the application of electronic certificates of origin to simplify procedures and facilitate import-export activities by the two countries’ enterprises.
The Vietnamese government proposed that Chile promote farm produce, forest product and seafood imports to reduce the imbalance in bilateral farm produce trade. Vietnam exported produce worth only US$1.75 million to Chile while importing produce worth US$153 million from this market.
The Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency (VIETRADE) of the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Chilean trade promotion authority have exchanged a draft cooperation memorandum of understanding (MoU) and agreed to sign the document as soon as possible to promote bilateral trade and investment relations.