Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh  (R) talks with Minister of State for Trade and Investment Mark Ian Price (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – The UK will continue supporting the Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) even after it leaves the European Union.

Minister of State for Trade and Investment Mark Ian Price made the statement at the ninth meeting of Vietnam-UK Joint Economic, Trade Cooperation Commission in Hanoi on October 19.

He said trade between Vietnam and the UK has seen continuous growth in recent years, and the UK wants to see further growth in bilateral trade.

Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh affirmed that the UK is an important trade and investment partner of Vietnam.

Huge investment opportunities are opening up in such fields as industry and agriculture for foreign businesses, including those from the UK, he said.

He urged the two countries’ management agencies to take stronger actions in order to implement commitments set in the signed FTA.

The ongoing visit of the UK Minister of State for Trade and Investment provides a chance for the European country to get a clearer vision about cooperation opportunities between the two countries in the future, Minister Tran Tuan Anh added.

The negotiation of the EVFTA was concluded on December 1, 2015. The official document on the agreement was made public on February 1, 2016.

The EVFTA is considered a comprehensive and high-quality agreement, which pays attention to balanced interests for both Vietnam and the EU and complies with the World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s regulations.

Under the trade pact, which is expected to take effect from 2018, Vietnam is committed to removing most import tariffs as well as export taxes.

Statistics showed nearly 47 percent of Vietnam’s exports to the UK were mobile phones, computers, and electronic spare parts. Vietnam recorded a trade surplus of 3.9 billion USD with the UK in 2015 and 1.7 billion USD in the first five months of 2016.-VNA