HÀ NỘI At a conference on Tuesday in Hà Nội, business leaders from Việt Nam and the Czech Republic explored avenues for further economic collaboration.
Among the speakers was Jozef Síkela, the Czech Minister of Industry and Trade, who highlighted Việt Nam’s potential as one of the fastest-growing markets in Southeast Asia with significant investment opportunities.
Síkela urged businesses from both countries to seek out ways to collaborate and strengthen ties.
Jaroslav Hanák, President of The Confederation of Industry of the Czech Republic, echoed these sentiments, stating that Czech businesses see Việt Nam as a crucial export market and a promising partner.
The conference served as a platform for both sides to discuss ways to build upon existing business ties and unlock the full potential of their economic relationship.
Phạm Tấn Công, Chairman of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI), noted that there had been significant progress in business ties between the two countries in recent years.
Despite the global pandemic, two-way trade reached US$828 million last year, a 12.65 per cent increase from 2021. Việt Nam’s exports to the Czech Republic in 2022 reached $668 million, a 14.58 per cent increase, while imports from the Czech Republic amounted to $160 million, a 5.2 per cent increase year-on-year.
“The zero import tariff of Vietnamese goods to the European Union, which is set to take effect this year, is expected to boost traditionally popular products, including agriculture, textiles, seafood, and furniture,” said the Chairman.
As of May 2022, Czech businesses invested in 41 projects across Việt Nam with a total investment value of nearly $92.4 million, ranking 49 out of 139 countries with investment in the country, with the majority of projects in mineral extraction, hospitality, manufacturing, retail, and property.
Công noted that the Czech Republic’s earlier decision to designate Việt Nam as a key market with preferential trade policies had established a foundation for future economic ties to flourish.
Đỗ Thắng Hải, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade (MoIT), stated that as a member of the ASEAN Economic Community, Việt Nam is an excellent gateway for Czech businesses to access one of the world’s fastest-growing regions with a population of 600 million.
Furthermore, Việt Nam has ratified several key free trade agreements, including the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the European Union–Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), to facilitate trade with over 200 countries.
Importantly, the country is working towards bringing down almost all tariffs to zero to create the most favourable environment for businesses and investors, attracting many of the world’s largest corporations to establish operations in Việt Nam.
“We encourage Czech businesses to enter the Vietnamese market. The Vietnamese government remains committed to providing a favourable environment to support Czech businesses in our country,” said the Deputy Minister.
During the conference, Vietnam Airlines, the Southeast Asian country’s flag carrier, signed a cooperative agreement with F AIR, a certified flight school in the Czech Republic, to train pilots.