Trade forum looks to expand supply chain to EU
Trade forum looks to expand supply chain to EU

The event was held by the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) on September 14, focusing on opportunities to expand the supply chain with EU partners.

Nguyen Thao Hien, Deputy Director of the MoIT's European-American Market Department, said that in recent years, Vietnam has been transforming strongly to become an important link in the global production and supply chain with competitive advantages from its favourable geo-economic location and a series of free trade agreements that it has participated in.

The EU is currently a leading trading partner as it is the third biggest export market and fifth largest import market of Vietnam. Meanwhile, Vietnam is the 16th trading partner of the EU and the largest trading partner of the EU in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the world’s 11th biggest supplier of goods to the bloc.

Statistics from the General Department of Customs, two-way trade between Vietnam and the EU reached 62.24 billion USD last year, up 9.2% compared to 2021’s figure. Of which, Vietnam shipped 46.82 billion USD worth of products to the bloc, up 16.7%.

Hien said that Vietnam has favourable conditions to expand a diverse and sustainable supply chain with EU partners as Vietnam is one of the first four Asian countries that signed an FTA with the EU. This will continue to create significant competitive advantages for Vietnamese businesses exporting to the EU in the coming time, she said, adding that goods structure of import and export between Vietnam and the EU is complementary to each other.

The shifting of supply chain and investment flows is bringing opportunities for Vietnam to enhance competition to attract investment and transfer technology from EU partners, she noted.

Sharing difficulties when exporting products to the EU relating to the garment and textile industry, Vu Duc Giang, Chairman of the Vietnam Textile and Apparel Association, said it is a must for businesses to invest in infrastructure, improve the working environment, and reduce carbon emissions along with ensuring quality standards.

Vice Chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce (EuroCham) in Vietnam Jean-Jacques Bouflet said that as global consumers prefer environmental friendly products and companies focus on investing in green logistics, Vietnam is facing challenges related to green transition and sustainable development.

To deal with these difficulties, it is essential for the country to ensure its compliance with green standards through the application of stricter environmental regulations, pouring more capital into research and development and infrastructure improvement, he suggested, adding that enhancing logistics capacity and human resource training is also needed./.