Friday, 19 Jan 2018
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ECONOMYTRADE - SERVICE

Taking advantages from FTAs for sustainable development

Updated at Friday, 12 Jan 2018, 16:00
The Hanoitimes - With over 6,000 enterprises, textile & garment industry accounted for 15% of Vietnam’s total trade value in 2017 and plays a key role in the economy.
In the coming time, taking advantages from free trade agreements (FTA) is priority for Vietnam’s textile & garment industry to develop sustainably. 


Previously, a decrease in demand from major export markets since the end of 2016 to early 2017 had caused numerous difficulties for the industry. However, under new approaches, export value and the market shares of Vietnam’s textile & garment industry have increased compared to 2016. 

Specifically, Vietnam’s export to the US has increased to 7.2%, with market share up from 10% to 11%; in EU for an increase of 9.23% and 0.2% of market share; in Japan for an increase of 6.1% and 0.8% of market share; in Korea for an increase of 11.8% and 1.6% of market share; in particular, Vietnam’s import to Russia has increased 56%, with the increase in market share from 1.3% to 1.8%. 

Comparing main competitors of Vietnam in this industry such as China, India, Bangladesh and Indonesia, Vietnam has witnessed the highest growth among these countries, resulting in the export value of over US$31 billion, an increase of 10% over the last year’s figure. 

In addition to improvements in production capacity and business management, opportunities from free trade agreements have significantly contributed for Vietnam’s progression in textile & apparel export, source from Vietnam Textile & Apparel Association (VITAS) said. 

While Vietnam’s export value to the Korea in 2016 reached US$2.6 billion for an increase of 9.5%, the number in 2017 has increased to US$2.9 billion, equivalent to 11.8%, mainly thanks to the effectiveness of the Vietnam – Korea Free Trade Agreements (VKFTA). 

Besides, the Vietnam – Eurasia Economic Union Free Trade Agreement (VN – EAEU FTA) also plays an instrumental role in helping for a sharp increase in trade value of Vietnam’s textile & apparel products from US$84.8 million in 2015 to US$172 million in 2017.

The establishment of ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) has positive impact on Vietnam export to ASEAN market from US$1 billion in 2015 to US$1.35 billion in 2017. Similarly, advantages gained from the ASEAN – China Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement, ASEAN – China Free Trade Agreement and the Memorandum of Understandings between Vietnam and China has led to an increase from US$2.2 billion in textile & apparel products in 2015 to US$3.2 billion in 2017. 

As Vietnam continue its extensive integration to the global economy, the textile & garment industry remains huge potential for development. However, in order to realize these advantages, in addition to increasing investment in the industry, there should be more effort in promoting local brands in international markets. It is therefore important to raise awareness and understandings of FTA, said the Chairman of VITAS. 
Ngoc Thuy
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