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Vietnam Today

EVFTA to be ratified in 2018

Released at: 10:40, 18/09/2017

EVFTA to be ratified in 2018

Illustrative image (Source:http: cafebiz.vn )

Both sides working on final details for free trade agreement to be ratified within next eight or nine months.

by Quang Huy

The European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade (INTA) and the Vietnamese Government have agreed they must make concerted efforts to secure ratification of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) in the next eight or nine months.

INTA Chairman Mr. Bernd Lange, who has been a working trip to Vietnam, said on September 15 that the parliament is in charge of approving all treaties or international trade agreements the EU joins. The EVFTA will be considered in two stages, by the INTA and by the European Parliament. The deal is scheduled to be considered and verified by the INTA in the spring of 2018 to ensure that all commitments in the agreement will be fully implemented.

If the parliament reaches majority consensus, the EVFTA will be approved next summer, Mr. Lange noted, expressing his belief that the trade pact will bring about sustainable growth and benefits to both sides.

To quickly conclude the EVFTA negotiations, which are now in the final stage of legal review, Mr. Lange said Vietnam should soon ratify eight core conventions of the International Labor Organization (ILO) to ensure that the deal will equally benefit all people. “The EU and Vietnam should pledge not to obtain economic benefits at any cost and to ensure safety for the environment,” he added.

To guarantee that all people will benefit from the EVFTA, the two sides are set to establish a new mechanism, called domestic advisory groups, to provide advice to their governments, thus improving the deal’s content during implementation and creating opportunities for both sides’ organizations to exchange information.

Having ratified five out of the eight core conventions, Vietnam is set to ratify the three remaining conventions of the ILO on eliminating coerced labor and on collective bargaining agreements.

“As a member of the ILO, Vietnam pledges to strictly and effectively implement its commitments,” Minister of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs Dao Ngoc Dung said. “Vietnam gives top priority to completing the legal ground towards ratifying the free trade agreement with the EU.”

Mr. Nguyen Hoang Long, Director of the Department of Foreign Affairs of Localities at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said he has worked with the European Parliament and Commissioners in charge of cooperation with Vietnam and they have reiterated their support for the deal.

“They are convinced by the support from European firms and citizens who are living, working, and doing successful business in Vietnam,” he said. “I hope that with stronger government activities and exchanges, the EVFTA will soon be ratified and implemented, meeting both sides’ expectations.”

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