Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Ambassadors of member countries of the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU) have pinned high hope on trade and investment ties between EAEU and Vietnam as their free trade agreement took effect on October 5.

The pact was inked in Burabay, Kazakhstan, on May 29, 2015 by Vietnam and the EAEU members, namely Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan.

Kazakhstani Ambassador to Vietnam Beketzhan Zhumakhanov said at a press conference on October 5 that the deal will create optimal conditions for the concerned parties to promote their products and attract investments from each other.

Kazakhstan and Vietnam will have a chance to develop cooperation in railway transport as transportation will be very important after the agreement came into force, he said.

Russian Ambassador K.V.Vnuhov said trade between Vietnam and Russia reached 3.9 billion USD in 2015, representing a year-on-year rise of 4 percent. In the first seven months of this month, the figure stood at 2 billion USD, up 11 percent against the same period last year.

Vietnam has become Russia’s largest trade partner in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), he said, noting that the two countries aim to raise the bilateral trade to 10 billion USD in 2020.

Meanwhile, Armenian Ambassador Vardanyan R.G said the agreement helps expand trade among the EAEU, the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), ASEAN and the EU.

Belarusian Ambassador V.Goshin affirmed that Belarus will step up the import of Vietnamese seafood, rice, rubber, tea, coffee, spice and clothes.

With great opportunities and modern infrastructure, Belarus can serve as a gateway for Vietnamese companies to access the EAEU countries and Eastern European nations, the diplomat noted.

The enforcement of the EAEU-Vietnam free trade agreement is expected to lift bilateral trade to 8-10 billion USD in the years to come from the current 4 billion USD.

Under the agreement, Vietnam will remove import tariffs on 59 percent of the total tax lines on goods from the EAEU, including meat products, wheat flour, alcohol, mechanical equipment and steel products. The tariffs on another 30 percent of goods will be gradually reduced to 0 percent in the transitional period.

The average level of Vietnam’s duties on EAEU goods will drop from 10 percent to 1 percent, while EAEU’s average import tariffs on Vietnam’s goods will be reduced from 9.7 percent to 2 percent in 2025.

The tax removal is expected to spur the EAEU’s export of agricultural and industrial products to Vietnam, and vice versa, Vietnam’s farm produce, garment, bags and electrical devices will have better access to the EAEU market.

At the same time, businesspeople of both sides will have opportunities to take part in joint projects in the EAEU countries and Vietnam.-VNA