Less benefits from WTO accession than expected

HCMC, Apr 1, 2011. Vietnam has gained less benefits from global integration than expected since it joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2007, says a report from the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM).

Vo Tri Thanh, vice president of the institute, said in a meeting on Tuesday that Vietnam expected many positive effects from its WTO accession, especially in international trade and foreign investment, but the results are far from satisfaction.

Foreign direct investment in Vietnam after WTO accession has not yielded desirable results as well, Thanh said.

Vietnam expected foreign investors would have a better impression of the country’s WTO accession, and they would increase investment, thus enhancing the country’s competitiveness and creating many jobs.

Yet, FDI in recent years has focused mainly on sectors with wider openness, such as services and property, while the country has seen less investment in fields that it wanted to attract foreign funds such as agriculture, said another ministry official.

“Some foreign investors are looking for quick profits. Some now import goods for sale in the domestic market,” said Nguyen Dang Binh, deputy director general of the Department of National Economic Issues under the Ministry of Planning and Investment.

“But it’s largely due to Vietnam’s current institutions that encourage them to do so,” he said.

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