Vietnam vows to remove obstacles facing Australian exporters amid COVID-19 hinh anh 1Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh  (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Vietnam will make an all-out effort to remove difficulties facing Australian enterprises when exporting to Vietnam during the COVID-19 crisis, Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh told Australian Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham during phone talks on the morning of May 8.

The two ministers agreed on ways to work together to restore supply chains and cooperation within multilateral frameworks disrupted by COVID-19 after the pandemic has been brought under control.

They discussed ways to put each among the other’s top 10 trading partners and provide broader access for agricultural, forestry and fishery products.

They agreed to soon resume maritime transport and flights between the two countries and coordinate to diversify supply chains so they are less dependent on certain suppliers, while promoting investment and technology transfer in energy, mining, metallurgy, and support industries.

Minister Anh said that, at present, one of the most effective measures to cushion the blow from COVID-19 is to enhance bilateral cooperation in utilising existing free trade agreements.

He suggested the two countries further strengthen concerted efforts in trade promotions and partnerships between the Trade Remedies Authority of Vietnam and the Australian Anti-dumping Commission to improve the effectiveness of support for business communities and prevent unnecessary clashes in the area of trade.

Minister Birmingham, for his part, said Australia hopes that, as ASEAN Chair, Vietnam will work alongside other economies in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) to soon complete preparations for the signing of the trade deal this year.

He thanked the Ministry of Industry and Trade for its timely support and close coordination in deepening bilateral trade relations.

He agreed to speak with the Australian Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Environment about Minister Anh’s proposal to fast-track procedures for giving Vietnam approval to export farm produce, fishery products, and fresh fruit, including passion fruit and rambutan, to Australia.

Vietnam and Australia lifted ties to a strategic partnership in March 2018.

Two-way trade exceeded 2 billion USD in the first quarter of this year, up 13.4 percent year-on-year. Vietnam’s exports to Australia totalled 924.4 million USD, an increase of 11.65 percent, while imports were worth nearly 1.1 billion USD, up 15 percent./.