Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue speaks at the conference (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam is participating more extensively in international economic integration activities, thus helping expand the country’s foreign trade, heard a conference on the country’s international integration in Hanoi on August 26.

Participants agreed that the agreements Vietnam has signed with other nations and international organisations have opened up new and larger markets for economic, trade and investment cooperation.

Vietnam has to date established trade ties with over 200 countries and territories. More than 100 countries and territories are running investment projects in Vietnam, while domestic firms are also investing in projects in more than 70 nations and territories.

However, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Quoc Khanh said that Vietnam is not really proactive in the integration process and has yet to bring into full play its advantages.

The capacity of grasping opportunities of Vietnamese enterprises remains low. Meanwhile, commitments on market opening are set to create fiercer competition in several fields, including animal husbandry.

Weak production models and methods, along with people’s poor awareness of food safety and hygiene make Vietnamese products less competitive.

If these problems are dealt with, Vietnamese enterprises can stand firm in the domestic market during the integration process, Khanh stated.

He also stressed the need for local governments and businesses to understand FTAs’ contents to avoid disputes with investors.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue said that it is necessary to make an overall assessment of Vietnam’s enforcement of free trade agreements (FTA), from preparations to the adaptation of ministries, sectors and products, in order to propose measures to better take advantage of these agreements.

Together with ASEAN, Vietnam signed the framework agreement on ASEAN-China economic cooperation, the ASEAN-Republic of Korea trade in goods agreement, the ASEAN-Japan comprehensive economic partnership agreement, and the framework agreement on ASEAN-India comprehensive economic partnership.

The country also signed FTAs with several countries, and finished negotiations on numerous important agreements, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement, and FTAs with the Eurasian Economic Union, the EU and the Republic of Korea.

To integrate into the global economy, Vietnam has made progresses in promulgating and adjusting its law to conform with international practice, which makes the business environment more open and transparent, ensure equality between economic sectors and between enterprises, and boost production, business and investment.-VNA