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Sep 20, 2023 / 13:10

US urged to recognize Vietnam’s market economy status

US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo pledged to push for the swift recognition of Vietnam's market economy status.

Vietnam calls for the US to soon recognize its market economy status, a significant step in bolstering bilateral economic cooperation, said Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh at a meeting with US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo in Washington on September 19.

 Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. Photos: Nhat Bac

During the meeting, Prime Minister Chinh emphasized that Vietnam views economic, trade, and investment cooperation as the cornerstone and driving force of its Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with the US.

Chinh urged the US Department of Commerce to promptly recognize Vietnam's market economy status. He also called for continued efforts to strengthen bilateral economic and trade relations, especially by encouraging US high-tech enterprises to do business in Vietnam and increase delegation exchanges and knowledge sharing between the two sides.

He advocated for breakthroughs in cooperation in science, technology, innovation, education, and training. He emphasized the importance of working together to combat climate change, foster green growth, and advance renewable energy.

Secretary Gina Raimondo conveyed the vital interest of US businesses in Vietnam for business and investment opportunities.

Raimondo suggested that US businesses and investment funds are poised to make substantial investments in Vietnam following the conclusion of negotiations on the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF).

Chinh, for his part, urged the US to further open its market to Vietnamese products such as electronics, textiles, footwear, agricultural goods, and fresh fruits. He wanted the two sides to sustain the growth in two-way trade, as seen in recent years while ensuring that the interests of Vietnamese businesses were properly taken into account. He underscored the importance of avoiding trade barriers against Vietnamese goods and maintaining a balanced, fair, and mutually beneficial trade relationship.

Raimondo pledged to work for the US's expeditious recognition of Vietnam's market economy status. She said the two sides would work together to implement the agreed- aspects of the Joint Declaration on the Vietnam-US Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, especially in priority areas such as economics, trade, and investment, aiming to substantiate and enhance the effectiveness of cooperation between the two countries.

 Prime Minister Chinh and US Trade Representative Katherine Tai. 

During the meeting with Trade Representative Katherine Tai on the same day, Prime Minister Chinh called on both sides to actively collaborate in expeditiously implementing the agreements reached by the senior leaders of both countries. This includes the US's priorities to advancing the process of recognizing Vietnam as a market economy and further opening its market to Vietnamese goods such as textiles, garments, footwear, and agricultural products.
Chinh stressed the importance of safeguarding the interests of Vietnamese businesses and the US refraining from imposing trade defense measures against Vietnamese products, all while ensuring a balanced, equitable, and mutually beneficial trade relationship.
The Prime Minister also advocated exploring new frontiers in science and technology cooperation, innovation, education, and training. He suggested that the US assist Vietnam in building a semiconductor chip supply chain.
In response, USTR Katherine Tai reiterated the US's view of Vietnam as an important partner in the region. She expressed her strong desire to continue promoting economic and trade cooperation between the two countries, and her role as USTR is to expand the relationship between Vietnam and the US in the future.
Katherine Tai also expressed her hope that Vietnam would continue to participate in supporting efforts to expeditiously conclude negotiations on the IPEF. The goal of these negotiations is to bring about mutual benefits to the countries and people in the region, she noted.
In 2022, the US emerged as Vietnam's second-largest trading partner and largest export destination, representing a significant 20% share of the nation's total export value. The two-way trade volume between Vietnam and the US reached an impressive $123 billion, marking a remarkable fourfold increase from 2013 and a staggering 273-fold rise from a mere $450 million recorded in 1994.
Furthermore, the US ranks as Vietnam's fifth-largest source of goods, accounting for 5% of the country's total imports since 2018. At the same time, Vietnam stands as the US' eighth-largest trading partner.
Regarding investment relations, the US has consistently been one of Vietnam's leading investment partners. The US currently ranks 11th among 142 countries and territories investing in Vietnam, with a total of 1,223 active projects and a registered capital exceeding $11.4 billion.