The Vietnam Ministry of Industry and Trade is to host a Vietnam-US trade forum at New World Hotel in Ho Chi Minh City on May 18 aiming to provide Vietnamese exporters with up-to-date information about policies, and analyses on assessment of challenges in seizing new opportunities for exports.
Garments top the list of export items to the US.
The event is expected to attract roughly 300 delegates, including enterprises, representatives from Vietnam's business associations and localities, importers, investors, distributors, experts, researchers, and US businesses operating in the Southeast Asian nation.
The forum is seen as a platform for entrepreneurs to stay more active in outlining their effective businesses orientations, and seeking partnership opportunities through introductions, promotions, and trade connectivity.
According to the European and American Market Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the US has been always the leading trade partner of Vietnam over the past 10 years. Consequently, export promotion activities related to this potential market have always been of particular interest to the business community.
Vietnam’s exports to the US hit US$41.6 billion, accounting for more than 20% of the country’s total exports. In addition to key export products such as garments and textiles, leather and footwear, wood and seafood products, new goods sectors such as electronics, steel, and processed foods also found a foothold in the market.
Since the Vietnam-US Bilateral Trade Agreement (BTA) came into effect in December 2001, bilateral trade has displayed a steadily high growth, increasing from a modest US$220 million in 1994 (the year the US lifted its economic embargo against Vietnam) to US$1.4 billion in 2001 ( the year before the BTA became effective) hitting heights of around US$50.8 billion in late 2017.
Vietnam ranks 12th in merchandise exports to the US and 27th in imports, and has emerged as the 16th largest trade partner of the wealthy nation. Its high trade surplus with the US rose to beyond US$ 32.4 billion in 2017.
Ten of the key products exported to the US reached approximately US$34 billion last year, constituting more than 80% of Vietnam’s total exports. Garments topped the list of export staples at US$12.28 billion, trailed by footwear ( US$5.11 billion) telephones and components (US$3.7 billion), and computers, electronics, components, wood and timber products (US$3.26 billion).