Brussels (VNA) – Executive Vice President of the European Commission (EC) Valdis Dombrovskis, who is also Trade Commissioner, has affirmed that the European Union (EU) has regarded Vietnam as its important partner in the region, and called the Southeast Asian nation a model in impressive trade cooperation, especially after the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) came into force in 2020.
Speaking at a meeting with the ASEAN Brussels Committee ( ABC ) in Brussels on June 6, Dombrovskis noted that the EU will increase its investment in Vietnam, particularly in significant such areas as just energy transition, and sustainable development.
Vietnam’s Vice Ambassador to Belgium Vu Thu Thuy emphasised that the EU is an important partner of Vietnam, and trade cooperation remains a bright spot and a pillar of the bilateral ties.
After the coming into force of the EVFTA , the two-way trade has grown more than 30% annually despite uncertainties in the regional and global situation, she said, suggesting the two sides continue their coordination to effectively materialise the existing agreements, while expanding their collaboration in other spheres like circular ec onomy, green energy, smart agriculture and digital economy.
Thuy also called on the EU to increase its high-quality investment in Vietnam, and help the country in the transfer of cutting-edge technologies, and capacity improvement in the time ahead.
Regarding the ASEAN-EU relations, the official said Vietnam stands ready to cooperate and share experience, towards common goals of ASEAN.
She also suggested ASEAN and the EU further optimise cooperation channels, frameworks and forums to effectively coordinate in addressing challenges in the spirit of mutual benefits.
Dombrovskis also noted that the 10-member grouping is the EU’s third biggest trade partner, and vice versa, and the two sides boast substantial potential and advantages to expand their cooperation, especially in economy, trade and investment.
Apart from trade, the EU wishes to partner with ASEAN in other fields like green transition, digital transformation and sustainable supply chain, he added.
The ASEAN countries expressed their wish that the EU will step up cooperation with the bloc, and suggested the two sides enhance dialogues and hold all-level negotiations to improve their mutual trust and understanding, and narrow development gaps./.