Vietnam taking prudent steps toward ASEAN Economic Community

bo truong 1“Vietnam has always focused on protecting items related to agriculture,” MoIT Minister Vu Huy Hoang said. “As a result, if we take prudent steps, we should not be afraid of the AEC.”

Minister Hoang also said Vietnam has always had a clear roadmap, especially in terms of sensitive goods of which domestic production capability is limited, so that the country will have a certain period for the local production sector to improve its capacities and increase market share later.

Wholesale and retail markets are particularly worrisome. “This is one step to take while following the roadmap, as we open the market gradually and cautiously. Besides, for each commodity, we have a different degree of openness,” he said.

Currently foreign wholesalers and retailers are operating in Vietnam but to a very limited extent, while the amount of goods and categories of goods subject to inspection and control is very large.

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In terms of bilateral trade in goods, U.S. imports of goods from ASEAN (2013) are 7% lower than imports from Japan, 2 times higher than imports from Korea, and 3.0 times higher than imports from India. U.S. exports of goods to ASEAN (2013) are 1.2 times exports to Japan, 1.5 times exports to Korea, and 3.6 times exports to India.
Within ASEAN, Vietnam is the country to watch. Remarkably, just eight years after WTO accession in January 2007, Vietnam is the leading ASEAN member country source of imports for the United States.
And ASEAN is the largest recipient of U.S. Direct Investment in Asia, see ASEAN Matters for America, East-West Center, Hawaii, USA