09:38 | 30/10/2018 MUTRAP Corner
Economic, trade, and investment ties between Vietnam and Romania remain modest and have yet to match their full potential, as heard at a seminar introducing the Romanian market in Hanoi on October 22.
|At the seminar|
This limited relationship is attributable to the lack of cooperation agreements on banking, customs, and tourism, as well as the limited marketing of businesses on both sides.
Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) Doan Duy Khuong lauded the Romanian Government and businesses for their efforts so far in promoting economic ties between the two nations.
From 2010-2018, bilateral trade between Vietnam and Romania grew rapidly, reaching nearly 300 million USD at its annual maximum. Of this figure, about 80-90 million USD was from Vietnam’s exports, mostly in robusta coffee beans, computers and components, televisions and electronics, tra and basa fish, natural rubber, suitcases, footwear, and apparel and textiles.
Meanwhile, the European country exported steel sheets and billets, plastic, chemicals and pharmaceuticals into Vietnam.
Khuong said Romania is the largest market in Southern Europe with a population of 21 million and the seventh largest nation in Europe in terms of surface area, serving as a gateway to the EU with its over 500 million consumers.
Lying in a location convenient for maritime transportation and in the hub of three European economic corridors, Romania holds strengths in oil and gas, petrochemicals, construction, healthcare, and farm produce processing. The country is also a member of many global multilateral economic cooperation institutions.
He said Vietnam’s signing of various free trade agreements (FTAs) and new-generation FTAs will open the door to connecting with major markets in the region and around the world.
Vietnam also has political stability and an improved workforce quality, Khuong said, adding that it will continue to seek measures to promote socio-economic ties and people-to-people exchanges with Romania.
Romanian Minister for Business Environment, Commerce and Entrepreneurship Stefan Radu Oprea said there remains room to lift the bilateral partnership and hoped that there will be many opportunities for the two governments to balance out the trade deficit.
Vice President and Secretary General of the Vietnam-Romania Friendship Association Bui Trong Dinh said that as of the late 2017, Romania poured US$1.2 million into two projects in Vietnam, ranking 93rd out of 125 countries and territories investing in the country. At the same time, there are 216 Vietnamese companies working in Romania with a total registered capital of nearly 2.1 million EUR.
Several Vietnamese firms are conducting surveys to decide on investing in construction and labour in the European country.
In order to improve the efficiency of bilateral economic ties, Dinh suggested stepping up negotiations for the signing of cooperation agreements on banking, tourism and, customs, while revising agreements on investment encouragement and protection, as well as double taxation avoidance, and realising an agreement on maritime transportation signed from 1994-1995.
Dinh stressed the need to hold trade promotion seminars, making it easier for enterprises to learn about each other’s market and popularise products.