Vietnam needs to join the fast-growing wave of countries signing bilateral free trade agreements, or chances for development in the country will slip, commented economic experts recently. The comment was made in a conference on the international economic trend in Vietnam on July 26, which attracted top officials and senior economic specialists from the foreign ministry, the Vietnam Institute of Economics, the World Bank and the UNDP.
Although the world’s economy has been structuring in fast pace, creating great development opportunities for every nation, the rules and principles of an international economy system have not yet been established, said economists. Thus, many countries are trying to reach bilateral free trade agreements with its partners to gain the benefits, they analysed.
If Vietnam does not join this tendency, its trade volume and quality will dip, reducing its shares in the world’s market, said experts. Vietnam has been facing increasing competition in international trade, particularly from its neighbouring countries.
But, Dr Tran Dinh Thien of the Vietnam Institute of Economics said that Vietnam can’t sign too many trade agreements in a short period of time like Singapore, Thailand or China have done so far because its internal strength is not efficient enough yet.
The country should be well prepared for signing such an agreement with some of its leading strategic partners, while focusing on its WTO entry bid, Thien suggested.
Sharing Thien’s opinion, Le Dang Doanh, government senior economic specialist, recommended that Vietnam should start negotiations for bilateral free trade agreements with certain countries in the near future.