Illustrative photo (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – A seminar entitled “European Union market: export opportunities for businesses in the new context” took place in Hanoi on December 5.

Speaking at the event, Deputy Director of the Department of Europe – America Markets under the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) Tran Ngoc Quan said the EU is a large, potential market with 28 member nations and a population of over 500 million.

Over the past years, bilateral trade has been growing strongly and Vietnam has seen a trade surplus with the bloc.

Two-way trade rose from 4.1 billion USD in 2000 to 45 billion USD in 2016, making the EU one of the leading trade partners of Vietnam. During the period, Vietnam’s exports to the EU soared from 2.8 billion USD to 34 billion USD and Vietnam’s imports from the bloc increased from 1.3 billion USD to 11 billion USD.

However, the EU is one of the markets with strict technical regulations aimed at protecting people’s health, the environment and sustainable development.

Quan requested firms to prepare enough documents to ensure that wood exploitation and processing must abide by the EU’s regulations.

As a number of exporters have yet to meet strict requirements on origin of products, they were also asked to build plans on supply chain adjustments, thereby tapping preferential tariffs once the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement takes effect.

The seminar was hosted by the Export Promotion Centre under the MoIT’s Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency.-VNA