Promoting Vietnam – UK agricultural trade and investment relations

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27 May 2022, Vietnam: On May 25, Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien gave an opening speech at the Vietnam – UK Business Connection Forum. Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien said that the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland was one of the strategic and important partners for Vietnam’s agriculture in terms of trade and investment, especially through the United Kingdom-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (UKVFTA).

Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phung Duc Tien: “Vietnam and UK agriculture can complement each other very effectively”

Within the framework of Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phung Duc Tien’s business trip to the United Kingdom, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) coordinated with the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) of Vietnam and the Department for International Trade (DIT) of the United Kingdom to organize the Vietnam – UK Business Connection Forum. The forum has attracted the participation of more than 100 businesses, associations and related organizations in the two countries.

On May 25, Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien gave an opening speech at the Vietnam – UK Business Connection Forum. Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien said that the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland was one of the strategic and important partners for Vietnam’s agriculture in terms of trade and investment, especially through the United Kingdom-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (UKVFTA).

Bilateral trade turnover between Vietnam and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (UK) in 2021 reached over USD 6.6 billion – an increase of more than 17%. In particular, agro-forestry-fishery trade between the two countries had grown steadily at 6%/year, reaching nearly USD 1 billion in 2021.

As shared by Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien, cooperation in the agricultural field between Vietnam and the UK had captured the interest of the two countries’ Governments and ministries and was further promoted. And thanks to the support of the two countries’ embassies, important steps had been achieved, laying the foundation for cooperation and development in the future.

Vietnamese and UK agriculture can complement each other very effectively. Vietnam’s strong point lies in tropical agricultural products (rice, vegetables, coffee, tea, cashew, pepper), fisheries and wood processing products. Meanwhile, UK agriculture claims its strength in temperate agricultural products, including new generation machinery, equipment and inputs, high technology in service of agricultural production, agricultural product processing and vaccine research.

Vietnam – UK Business Connection Forum has attracted the participation of more than 100 businesses, associations and related organizations in the two countries

However, there is still plenty of room for promotion in agriculture, forestry and fishery trade. Vietnam’s agricultural, forestry and fishery exports to the UK are only approximately USD 800 million, accounting for about 1.3% of the UK’s total food import value of USD 60 billion. In a similar manner, the UK’s agricultural exports to Vietnam are less than 1% of Vietnam’s total AFF import value of over USD 30 billion.

Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien affirmed that UK investors are also reliable major partners of Vietnam’s economy in general and the agriculture industry in particular. The UK has invested in 434 projects in Vietnam with a total registered capital of USD 3.98 billion. With this result, the UK ranks 15th out of 140 countries and territories around the world that have investment projects in Vietnam.

Particularly in the recent period, Vietnam and the UK have both shared a strong commitment to green, sustainable and emission reduction economic development at major international forums such as COP26 and the United Nations Food Systems Summit.

With the intention of expanding the market for both sides, Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien hoped that UK enterprises will be interested in joint ventures, and close and trustful linkages with Vietnamese businesses and farmers.

The product of the cooperation between the two sides is not only an improvement in economic efficiency but the more important things are the values of friendship, the sharing of technology, and the cultural interchange between the two countries on the path of integration and sustainable global environment, bringing benefits to the people and businesses.

In the spirit of long-term traditional friendship, as a Strategic Partner for Peace and Prosperity, Deputy Minister Phung Duc Tien hoped that businesses of Vietnam and the UK would have more common voices, create connections and linkages, share information, build a long-term, in-depth business cooperation plan to build confidence so that both countries can join hands and develop greener, more sustainable and more prosperous agriculture.

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