Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Thanh Bien said his ministry plans to organize trade promotions, amend tax policies, and take other measures to boost exports this year.
|Workers make shirts at Viet Tien Garment Corporation in Ho Chi Minh City. Garment exports are predicted to recover this year as major economies come out of the recession (Photo: SGGP)|
Speaking at a meeting on August 27, he said in the first eight months Vietnam’s exports were worth US$37.3 billion, a 14.2 percent fall from the same period last year. To even achieve last year’s figure of US$63 billion, exports have to top US$5.7 billion a month in the last four months.
Mr. Nguyen Thanh Bien said Vietnam should continue to lobby the US to include it in a list of countries that benefit from the Generalized System of Preference (GSP), deal with technical barriers put up by the EU, especially against seafood imports, and form joint committees with African and other Asian countries to discuss trade.
He also suggested that enterprises should diversify their goods, improve quality, step up export of processed goods, and make full use of preferences offered under agreements with other countries.
They should familiarize themselves with other countries’ trade policies to adopt suitable strategies and minimize risks, he said.
His ministry would help companies open offices in other countries to take Vietnamese goods closer to foreign consumers, he said.
Garments, footwear, seafood, coffee, and wood would enjoy an advantage over other commodities when it comes to exports this year, he predicted.
For instance, tariffs on shrimp exported to Japan will fall to just 1-2 percent from October 1, following the recent Vietnam-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement.
Exports of garments and wood products are likely to increase soon thanks to signs of recovery in major markets like Japan, the US, and the EU.
The National Information and Socio-Economic Forecasting Centre said Vietnam’s exports this year would be $58.7–61.3 billion, a year-on-year decrease of 2.2-6.4 percent.