At the meeting, the two sides discussed specific plans for collaboration on raising two-way trade to US$20 billion in 2020, and on the work required for more balance in bilateral trade.
They also agreed on some measures to remove difficulties for businesses in carrying out trade activities, especially solutions to enhance cooperation in other fields such as agriculture, transport, customs, banking, investment, employment, intellectual property, and regional and sub-regional cooperation.
Minister Tran Tuan Anh suggested that Thailand create more favourable conditions for Vietnamese firms to export their farm produce and food to the market as well as speed up procedures to grant licences allowing the import of several kinds of Vietnamese fruits.
The minister also urged Thailand to remove the procedure of licensing exports of milk and dairy products from Thailand to Vietnam, and to reduce and eliminate trade protection measures against Vietnamese iron and steel products.
He also called on the two sides to draft coordinatedregulations to provide early warnings about the possibility of conducting trade procedure investigations on the other country’s export products, at the same time enhance coordination in multilateral cooperation frameworks.
Also at the conference, the two sides looked at some issues of concern to Thailand, such as the import of made-in-Thailand automobiles into Vietnam and Vietnam’s regulations on the rights of distributing medicines and medicine materials, and the transport, storage and marketing of medicines in the market.
Thailand is currently the biggest trade partner of Vietnam in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) with two-way trade increasing from US$11.5 billion in 2015 to US$15.3 billion in 2017, an annual growth of 15.5%.
In the first six months of 2018, bilateral trade reached nearly US$8 billion, a year-on-year rise of 14.7%. Vietnam exported more than US$2.7 billion worth of goods to Thailand in January-June, up 22.7% against the same period last year. Meanwhile, Vietnam is the second biggest trade partner of Thailand in ASEAN, following Malaysia.