Vietnam remains magnet for EU investment despite Covid

By Anh Minh   October 15, 2021 | 10:48 pm PT
Vietnam remains magnet for EU investment despite Covid
Workers make garment products in a factory in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyet Nhi
EU investments in Vietnam rose by $483 million year-on-year in the first nine months of this year to $22 billion despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a recent report to the National Assembly, the Government said trade with European countries too increased sharply since the EU- Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) took effect in August last year.

Investment by 26 out of 27 EU member countries increased in the year-to-date, and include major names such as Shell Group (the Netherlands), Total Elf Fina (France - Belgium), Daimler Chrysler (Germany), Siemens, and Alcatel Comvik (Sweden).

The Netherlands is the largest investor with nearly $10.4 billion in 382 projects. It is followed by France with $3.62 billion and Germany with $2.25 billion.

European investment is forecast to keep increasing in the medium and long terms, mainly in high-tech industries.

To attract EU investment, many provinces and cities are acquiring lands around industrial zones, building infrastructure and creating a skilled workforce in agriculture, manufacturing and logistics and simplifying administrative procedures.

Trade between the EU and Vietnam has also prospered in the year since EVFTA took effect despite the hurdles caused by Covid.

This year, it has risen by nearly 12 percent year-on-year to $54.6 billion, with Vietnam’s exports being worth $38.5 billion.

Vietnam’s main exports have been phones and components, computers, other electronic products and components, shoes, textiles, garments, machinery, equipment and appliances, tools and spare parts, and iron and steel products.

Vietnam is still struggling to comply with the stringent sustainability and other technical standards of the EU market. Besides, protectionism and use of trade remedies and non-tariff barriers is increasing in the bloc.

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