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Jul 19, 2015 / 11:03

Vietnam’s ambassador attends US trade emergency committee session

Vietnamese Ambassador to the US Pham Quang Vinh attended and delivered a speech at the 48 th session of the Emergency Committee for American Trade (ECAT).

In his speech, the ambassador reviewed the milestones and important achievements in the two nations' relations since the normalisation of bilateral diplomatic ties 20 years ago. 
He underlined that from two enemies at war, Vietnam and the US have now become comprehensive partners, with trade and investment ties being one of the main driving forces for bilateral relations. eHe underline 
Within just two decades (1995-2015), two-way trade between Vietnam and the US surged 70-fold to hit 36 billion USD. Currently, the US is the biggest export market of Vietnam and the seventh biggest foreign investor in the Southeast Asian country. 

Vietnamese Ambassador to the US Pham Quang Vinh
Vietnamese Ambassador to the US Pham Quang Vinh

The diplomat highlighted the historic visit of Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong to the US and the talks between him and President Barack Obama at the White House. 
He stressed that the outcomes of the visit demonstrated the vitality and growing trend of bilateral trade and investment ties. 
Regarding the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) which was of special concern of the ECAT meeting, Ambassador Pham Quang Vinh underlined the strategic significance of the pact to TPP member states and the entire region, which goes beyond the economic and trade scope as it will help strengthen the US relations with the Asia-Pacific, including Vietnam on the basis of a mutually-beneficiary partnership for the sake of peace, security and prosperity in the region. 
The ambassador affirmed that Vietnam has, and will continue with efforts to wrap up TPP negotiations as early as possible, while committing itself to seriously implement the agreement after its approval. 
In response to a comment that Vietnam would be the country that benefits the most from the TPP, Ambassador Vinh emphasised that the pact brings benefits and opportunities to all its members and to the entire Pacific Basin region as well. 
As a country with the lowest per capita income among 12 stake holders, joining the TPP would give Vietnam the chance to expand markets for its exports, draw overseas capital, create additional jobs and boost local incomes, shared the diplomat. 
At the same time, he pointed out that the pact would also bring not a few challenges, first of all Vietnamese enterprises would be at risk of losing the domestic market in competing with foreign businesses. 
Thus, mechanisms to ensure commitments and mutual benefits from the treaty are necessary, he said. 
Fielding a question on difficulties faced by Vietnam in amending domestic laws to align with the TTP, the ambassador made it clear that the country has implemented its legal reform for almost 30 years as part of its international integration process. The country has joined free trade mechanisms with around 50 partners, including 15 members of G20. The nation is also working hard to complete its legal environment in accordance with the 2013 Constitution. 
The ambassador said as such, joining the TPP and revising domestic laws in accordance with the pact is a part of the country’s reform and integration roadmap, adding that the specific adjustments of institutions and laws should be made in a correct manner suitable with Vietnam’s situation. 
He went on to laud the ECAT’s role in and support for free and fair international trade, especially the negotiations for the TPP and Vietnam-US cooperation. 
The ambassador urged greater involvement of the ECAT and its business members in promoting bilateral commercial and investment ties, thus contributing to Vietnam’s growth and the development of the comprehensive partnership between Vietnam and the US. 
Founded in 1967, ECAT is an organization of the heads of leading US-based international business enterprises representing all major sectors of the American economy. ECAT's purpose is to promote economic growth through the expansion of international trade and investment.