Exporters in Bình Định Province are taking advantage of the UK – Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (UKVFTA) and other similar trade deals to expand their markets, with the help of the provincial Department of Industry and Trade.
|A sheet metal manufacturing plant in Bình Định Province. Local exporters are receiving guidance from the province on how to ultilis free trade agreements such as the UKVFTA. — VNA/|
BÌNH ĐỊNH — Exporters in Bình Định Province are taking advantage of the UK – Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (UKVFTA) and other similar trade deals to expand their markets, with the help of the provincial Department of Industry and Trade.
In 2022, Bình Định’s export to the UK reached around US$57.9 million, a 24.7 per cent increase from 2021, and imported $119,000 worth of goods from the UK.
Meanwhile, the first nine months of 2023 saw the province’s exports to the UK reach nearly $39.7 million (3.6 per cent lower year-on-year), and imports reach $260,000.
Bình Định’s exports to the UK market mainly include seafood, wooden products, textiles and garments, and plastic products. Meanwhile, imports are mainly fabrics and materials for textiles, among others.
Ngô Văn Tổng, director of the province’s Department of Industry and Trade, told Việt Nam News that Bình Định has been utilising free trade agreements between Việt Nam and other markets, allowing export turnover in 2016 to 2020 to see an average annual growth rate of 9.5 per cent, and is estimated to reach 13 per cent annually for 2021 – 2023.
“From 2018 to 2022, new-generation free trade agreements such as UKVFTA and CPTPP have created many opportunities for exporters,” Tổng said.
The province exports to 128 countries and territories around the world, and the number of exporting businesses has been rising over the years, gradually expanding their markets and securing their positions overseas.
Businesses are focusing on improving their adherence to free trade agreements’ regulations on origin, quality standards, and responsibilities to society and the environment, as well as utilising e-commerce platforms.
They are also overcoming barriers to trade in several international markets to increase their exports and market penetration.
|Seafood is among Bình Định Province’s main exports to the UK. — VNA/|
Working with businesses
Over the past few years, the Department has been focusing on raising awareness of Việt Nam’s free trade agreements, such as UKVFTA, EVFTA and CPTPP, and helping businesses make use of them to expand their export markets. It has been advising the provincial People’s Committee to issue plans on facilitating the utilisation of these FTAs.
Under the plans, it works with the province to organise conferences and seminars to inform local businesses of new-generation FTAs and overseas markets, as well as instructions on rules of origin, tariffs and customs.
For example, in June, the department worked with the Việt Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s Đà Nẵng branch to organise a training conference in Quy Nhơn to help businesses and state workers from local departments gain a better understanding of the FTAs, including tariff reduction commitments, methods and formulas for rules of origin, and how businesses can look up tariffs for their export products online.
The department’s website also contains information about Việt Nam’s FTAs and helps local businesses stay updated on markets and trade opportunities.
In addition to bringing attention to the FTAs, the department has launched many solutions to help businesses improve their competitiveness overseas, such as solving difficulties hindering production and exports, and warning businesses of safeguard policies from other countries. By keeping a close eye on these export markets, it has been also able to guide businesses in finding export partners.
“The Department of Industry and Trade stays up-to-date and provides instructions on issues related to free trade agreements that Việt Nam partakes to departments in the province, districts and cities, business associations, and firms,” Tổng said.
The department has been carrying out a programme to develop the province’s export goods to 2025 and a “Promoting Vietnamese Businesses to Participate in Foreign Distribution Networks until 2030” programme in Bình Định, as well as the Government’s Decree 93/NQ-CP (July 5 2023) on enhancing international economic integration and fast and sustainable economic development in 2023 – 2030 in the province.
Every month, it also invites localities, departments and local businesses to partake in the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s conferences with the Vietnamese Trade Office in other countries to study new markets, facilitate trade and help businesses connect with foreign partners.
Tổng added that local businesses need to continue to focus on developing their production to make high quality goods for export.
“They need to invest in new technologies and equipment, expand their production scale, and improve their product’s value and competitiveness, in order to meet requirements on quality, food safety and demands of export markets. Joining international e-commerce platforms is also important.”
Bình Định’s key exports include wood and wooden products, agricultural goods, seafood, textiles and garments. Its export turnover in the first nine months of the year reached over $1.1 billion, 72.2 per cent of its 2023 target. —