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In the last session of the Review taking place on April 29, 2021, on behalf of the Viet Nam Delegation, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Quoc Khanh responded to comments in the first session from 43 WTO Members in groups, from strategic vision on integration and economic development to issues such as business environment reform, trade facilitation, fraud prevention and trade in promoting gender equality.
Deputy Minister Tran Quoc Khanh’s remarks were highly regarded by Chair of the Review, Ambassador Athaliah Lesiba Molokomme and the Discussant, Netherlands Ambassador Monique Van Daalen as well as WTO Members. The Discussant congratulated Viet Nam for the success of the Review, emphasising the achievements that Viet Nam had made since joining the WTO as well as since its first Review. After the session, the WTO Secretariat along with many WTO Members also expressed appreciation for such accomplishment from Viet Nam, at the same time looking forwards to its increasing role in the multilateral trading system.
The success of this Review was attributable to very early preparation by the Government, Ministries and authorities, of which the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) was assigned as coordinator. From as soon as March 2019, MOIT issued the Decision establishing the Inter-Ministry Working Group with participation of all relevant Ministries, authorities which had been involved in developing the Project “Preparation and Execution of Viet Nam’s 2nd Trade Policy Review in WTO”. Under the leadership and support of the Government, the tight cooperation of relevant Ministries, authorities, and the Viet Nam Delegation in Geneva, MOIT drafted and completed Viet Nam’s Government Report, drawing a comprehensive picture of Viet Nam’s economic development, trade, investment, etc. during the period 2014 – 2019, meanwhile providing data, feedback for WTO’s Secretariat Report. Both these Reports were highly appreciated by WTO Members for their quality, revealing comprehensively and particularly the fundamental characteristics of the Viet Nam economy during the period under review.
Besides the development of the Reports, Viet Nam received close to 900 questions and comments from WTO Members, including its significant trading partners such as United States, China, EU, South Korea, Japan, United Kingdom, etc. According to the WTO Secretariat, Viet Nam is by far amongst the top five WTO Members receiving most questions for a Trade Policy Review. Given the numerous questions which doubled those in the last Review (almost 500 questions), the Inter-Ministry Working Group provided responses to most of the questions. Such effort was acknowledged and highly regarded by the WTO Secretariat and WTO Members.
As Viet Nam is now amongst the world’s top 20 traders, its Trade Policy Review will be conducted once every 5 years instead of 7 years as currently. Viet Nam’s 3rd Review will therefore be expected to take place in 2025.