Vietnam, West Virginia state look to boost economic cooperation

The Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) and the US state of West Virginia signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on advancing bilateral energy, economic and commercial cooperation in Hanoi on February 25.

At the signing ceremony (Photo: VOV)
At the signing ceremony (Photo: VOV)

With the signing, the MOIT and West Virginia have set the goal of establishing a comprehensive cooperation framework to facilitate trade and investment activities in the fields of trade, industry and energy, as well as strengthening the sharing of information on the potential business opportunities and support projects of the two sides’ enterprises.

The MoU also clearly defines the responsibility and authority of each party in the implementation process and determines the establishment of a Joint Working Group to promote cooperation activities.

Addressing the ceremony, Tran Tuan Anh, Politburo member, Head of the Party Central Committee’s Economic Commission and MOIT Minister, highlighted the special importance of Vietnam-US relations, lauding the role and efforts of Congresswoman Carol Miller and Governor of West Virginia Jim Justice in promoting bilateral economic and trade ties at the US Congress and Government.

He expressed his belief that this is a very appropriate time for the two sides to facilitate in-depth cooperation to promote economic recovery and cope with COVID-19.

Building strategic trust is one of the most important factors that can substantially and sustainably promote Vietnam-US comprehensive partnership as a whole and particularly in the fields of economy and trade, for the benefits of the two countries’ people and businesses, contributing to peace, stability, cooperation and development in the Asia-Pacific region, Anh emphasised.

He affirmed that improving the business & investment environment and creating favourable conditions for US projects are the priorities of the Vietnamese Government.

Vietnam has participated in 16 free trade agreements with 54 partner countries, mostly members of the Group of 20, he said, noting that businesses of the US and West Virginia will have many opportunities to access an open market when fostering investment and business ties with Vietnam.

Congresswoman Carol Miller stressed that the signing of the MoU marks the beginning of an enduring friendship with an important partner, bringing practical economic benefits for both sides, promoting harmony and balance in Vietnam-US trade ties.

She pledged that in her roles in the state of West Virginia and in the US Congress, she would further strengthen relations between the two countries, as well as the mutual understanding and respect between West Virginia and Vietnam.

Since the establishment of a comprehensive partnership in 2013, Vietnam and the US have witnessed strong progress in bilateral trade and investment ties. Specifically, two-way trade grew strongly to US$90.8 billion in 2020 despite the negative impacts of COVID-19, and is moving towards US$100 billion this year.

In the last five years, Vietnam’s export turnover to the US has increased by 230%, while export revenue from the US to the Southeast Asian country has also reported a growth rate of over 175%. Furthermore, the two countries have developed an action plan with many specific measures, towards a harmonious and sustainable trade balance between the two countries, including the acceleration of cooperation with the US Federal Government and US states.