Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (R) welcomes ITC Executive Director Arancha González (Source: VGP)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam attaches importance to its cooperation with and wants to continue receiving more support from the International Trade Centre (ITC), said Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh while welcoming ITC Executive Director Arancha González in Hanoi on February 27.

Speaking highly of the centre’s assistance to Vietnam over the past years, Minh said he hopes the ITC will help form information channels to facilitate Vietnamese businesses’ access to market information make more effective business decisions as most of Vietnamese small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which account for 97 percent of the total number, find it difficult to approach information about the international market.

As integration helps Vietnam participate deeper in the global supply and value chains, a few local enterprises are competent enough to take part in these chains, Minh stated.

Therefore, he proposed the ITC give consultancy to help the Vietnamese Government build a strategy to support its enterprises in taking part in the chains.

Regarding the European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), Minh asked González and the ITC to back and raise voice to speed up the signing and ratification of the agreement and help improve Vietnam’s capacity so that the country could fully and effectively implement the deal’s commitments.

González said that her working visit from February 26-28 aims to learn about Vietnam’s demand and assist the country in realizing its development priorities.

With her experience and role, she pledged to help businesses in developing countries, including Vietnam, gain access to information, expand markets and participate deeper in the global value chain.

The ITC director also expressed her hope that parties will soon sign and ratify the EVFTA as it will bring practical benefits to the EU and its members through expanding and diversifying markets and connecting more closely with the Asian-Pacific and Southeast Asian regions.

Established in 1964, the ITC is the joint agency of the World Trade Organisation and the United Nations. It is the only development agency that is fully dedicated to supporting the internationalisation of SMEs.-VNA