Vietnam, UK promote trade, green technology cooperation

Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien hosted a reception in Hanoi on March 13 for UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy for Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar and Brunei Mark Garnier and UK Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City Emily Hamblin to discuss two-way trade toward celebrating the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties this year.

Dien congratulated the UK on completing the fifth talks on joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) in Vietnam’s southern province of Kien Giang in early March.

Through this event, Vietnam reaffirmed strong support for the UK’s accession to the deal and the further deepening of not only diplomatic ties but also friendly and multi-faceted cooperation between the two countries, he said.

He noted the trend of green transition in bilateral trade and called on the UK to support the transfer of green technologies to Vietnam, promote trade in eco-friendly products, meet market standards, and take advantage of the UK-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (UKVFTA).

Dien also had detailed discussions on the plans set for the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties, including a series of events jointly organised by the two countries’ agencies. He hoped that they would be a success, marking a brilliant year of development in bilateral relationship.

Thanking the UK for joining other countries to provide 15.5 billion USD for Vietnam’s transition to clean energy and emission reduction, the minister suggested both sides immediately issue a roadmap and necessary mechanisms to use this fund effectively.

The host proposed cooperating with the UK in the development of nuclear power, human resources training, technological transfer and policy counselling, especially producing equipment for renewable energy, technology in energy transition and smart grid operation centres.

Garnier, for his part, hoped that Vietnam would continue helping the UK call on other countries to complete CPTPP negotiations.

He congratulated Vietnam on being the second country in ASEAN, behind Indonesia, to successfully sign the Political Declaration on Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) with the UK, EU, and G7 countries.

Hailing Dien’s proposals, he affirmed the UK’s commitment to sharing its experience, expertise, patents and technology with Vietnam to enable the country to produce products in service of renewable energy, adding that the two countries are stepping up the establishment of an offshore wind development centre as well as embarking on a series of cooperative activities to share experience in this field.

Following the meeting, both sides could quickly build a cooperation programme to effectively realise reached agreements as soon as possible, the host said.

According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, two-way trade between Vietnam and the UK hit 6.83 billion USD in 2022, up 3.4% annually. Of which, Vietnam’s exports rose by 5.2% to over 6.06 billion USD. However, the UK’s exports to Vietnam decreased by 9.2% to 771 million USD.

As of December 20, 2022, the UK recorded 507 projects in Vietnam with a total capital of over 4.19 billion USD, ranking 15th out of 141 countries and territories investing in the country. Last year, the UK had a total of 53 new projects worth 64.33 million USD in Vietnam.