Administrative reforms – key to unlocking EVFTA

June 30, 2020 | 14:00
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In the times of post-pandemic recovery, the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and administrative reforms will be the key to boosting trade relations between Vietnam and the EU.
administrative reforms key to unlocking evfta
EuroCham and the prime minister's advisory council on administrative reform held a dialogue on preparing for the EVFTA

On Tuesday (June 30), the European Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam (EuroCham) and the Prime Minister’s Advisory Council for Administrative Procedure Reform (ACAPR) held a dialogue in Hanoi to discuss administrative reform ahead of the implementation of the EVFTA.

The event, titled “Administrative Reform: A Key Role in EVFTA Implementation” took place at Melia Hotel and featured special guest speaker Minister Mai Tien Dung, head of the Government Office. It also brought together business leaders, government officials, journalists, and members of the diplomatic corps to discuss how administrative reform can help to unlock the full potential of the upcoming EVFTA, which is set to enter into force on August 1.

At the dialogue, business leaders and the minister discussed a wide range of issues including, among others, the EVFTA; access to innovative pharmaceuticals and a predictable and consistent legal environment for investment; medical device machine installation in hospitals; goods labelling requirements; food safety inspection registration certificates; and tax tariffs applied to functional foods; e-commerce; certificate of free sale; the registration process for anti-bacterial products; and the management of e-commerce platforms.

The event also featured the launch of EuroCham’s 12th Whitebook publication. The Whitebook is EuroCham’s annual report, where the chamber’s 17 Sector Committees raise the issues most important to their business operations and highlight specific actions the government could take to improve the business environment and increase trade and investment with the EU.

“EuroCham is honoured to co-organise this important dialogue on administrative reform with the ACAPR and the Government Office. With the EVFTA entering into force in August, it is essential that business and government work together to ensure its smooth and successful implementation. One of the most critical factors will be accelerating Vietnam’s positive progress in administrative reform – streamlining business conditions, strengthening the business environment, and modernising the legal framework," Nicolas Audier, EuroCham chairman stated at the dialogue.

“That is why EuroCham publishes the Whitebook, now in its 12th edition. Our members share the goal of the government to attract more foreign direct investment. In this time of COVID-19, with economies around the world struggling with the impact of the pandemic, Vietnam now has a once-in-a-generation chance to capitalise on the EVFTA and attract more FDI from European enterprises looking for an open, competitive, and business-friendly market. If the government takes on board the recommendations in our Whitebook, I am confident that we will see even more European companies investing in Vietnam in the future.”

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