Businesses urged to raise competitiveness ahead of TPP opportunities hinh anh 1Illustrative image (Source: VNA)
Domestic manufacturing firms and exporters are expected to significantly benefit from the freshly-signed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement, yet they still need to map out plans to enhance their competitiveness and increase the presence of Vietnamese goods in the global market.

Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Steel Association Nguyen Van Sua said the TPP is hoped to create numerous benefits for steel production enterprises, especially in export activities thanks to preferential tariffs.

Nevertheless, businesses should invest in upgrading technologies rather than simply relying on support policies and preferential tariffs to increase productivity, reduce production costs and ensure quality, he advised.

Promoting trade is essential to bring the steel sector to the new markets, he suggested.

President of the Vietnam Foundry and Metallurgy Science & Technology Association Pham Chi Cuong said the nearly zero-percent tariffs under the TPP will create favourable conditions for steel businesses to export their products to the 800-million-strong TPP market.

The conclusion of the TPP is expected to facilitate foreign investment in Vietnam and vice versa while enabling Vietnamese firms to gain access to major markets such as the US, Japan and Australia, he added.

Involvement in the TPP will put pressure on expanding the market and increasing the competitive edge for Vietnamese business players, experts said, warning that difficulties are unavoidable without careful preparations.

Tariff reductions could help increase the flow of goods imported from TPP countries with higher competitive prices.

Started out as P-4 by Chile, New Zealand, Singapore and Mexico, the TPP was joined by the US in September 2008 and Vietnam by early 2009.

The TPP brings together 12 countries: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the US and Vietnam.

The completion of the historic, world’s largest free trade pact on October 5 in Atlanta, the US, has received a positive response from many countries around the world.

After the signing, the document must receive approval from member countries’ governments and parliaments before taking effect.

Once realised, the TPP will become a free trade region of 800-million people, accounting for 30 percent of global trade and about 40 percent of the world’s economy.-VNA