Potential for economic cooperation, especially opportunities created by the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), between Vietnam and the Czech Republic was introduced to Czech offices, organisations and enterprises at a seminar in Prague on December 5.
|Bořivoj Minar, Vice President of the Czech Chamber of Commerce, speaks at the seminar
Jointly held by Vietnam’s Embassy and the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Czech Republic’s Economic Chamber, the seminar attracted the participation of Vietnamese Ambassador Ho Minh Tuan, leading officials from the Economic Chamber and over 100 representatives from the Czech ministries of Industry and Trade, and Agriculture, the Confederation of Industry, and local businesses.
Speaking at the event, Ambassador Tuan said that Vietnam and the Czech Republic enjoy a time-honoured friendship, which serves as a firm foundation to intensify bilateral cooperation, especially in economy and trade.
The two countries’ economic and trade ties are developing well, reflected through an annual growth rate of over 15% in two-way trade in recent years, he stated, adding that the trade turnover is projected to hit US$1.2 billion this year, doubling that of 2013.
Highlighting the significance of the EVFTA, the diplomat said that the deal will create favourable conditions for enterprises from the European Union (EU), including the Czech Republic, to do long-term business and investment in Vietnam and expand the export of machinery, pharmaceutical products, chemicals and means of transport to the Vietnamese market. At the same time, Vietnam can increase the export of footwear, garment and textiles, farm produce, seafood, wood products and industrial consumer goods to the EU.
Tuan suggested local authorized offices and enterprises take actions to help speed up the signing and ratification of the EVFTA so as to facilitate bilateral economic collaboration.
Bořivoj Minar, Vice President of the Czech Chamber of Commerce, agreed with Tuan’s remarks on the potential for economic cooperation, especially opportunities brought by the EVFTA.
The Czech Republic has the strength in machine manufacturing, mining, food processing and beer production and is willing to collaborate with Vietnam in these fields, he stated, affirming that Czech enterprises can share experience and transfer technology to help Vietnamese partners produce and export their products on their own.
Jaromir Dudak, head of the Asia section of Ministry of Industry and Trade, said the EVFTA will benefit both the Czech Republic and Vietnam, especially in increasing two-way trade and his country’s investment in Vietnam.
The Czech Republic considers Vietnam as its traditional and potential trade partner, and a bridge for the export of Czech products to other markets in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Therefore, the country hopes Vietnamese offices will introduce trusted names to its enterprises to set up partnership, he said.
Within the framework of the seminar, the Vietnamese Embassy also organized a photo exhibition featuring Vietnam’s land and people as well as its potential and achievements.