|Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (R) and Foreign Minister of UAE Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan__Photo: VNA|
The bilateral relationship between Vietnam and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has flourished across fields, from politics and diplomacy to trade, investment, labor and tourism, over the last three decades since they set up diplomatic ties on August 1, 1993.
The UAE government and people have strongly supported Vietnam’s struggle for national independence and national construction.
Political trust and mutual understanding between the two countries have been continuously strengthened, clearly proven by the regular exchange of delegations at all levels between the two countries in recent times, which has contributed to deepening bilateral relations and opening up many cooperation opportunities between the two countries in many areas.
|Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien (L) and Minister of State for Foreign Trade of the UAE Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi sign a Ministerial Declaration on starting negotiations on a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (CEPA) between the two nations.__Photo: VNA|
In April this year, Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien and Minister of State for Foreign Trade of the UAE Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi signed a Ministerial Declaration on starting negotiations on a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (CEPA) between the two nations, marking a crucial milestone in bilateral cooperation and ushering in a new phase of strategic cooperation in many fields.
It is a basis for lifting Vietnam-UAE relations to a new development level, contributing to expanding the export market of Vietnamese goods and services to the UAE, and creating a premise for Vietnam to strengthen trade and service relations to the Middle East and African countries.
The deal also promotes the UAE’s investment in Vietnam and expands cooperation opportunities to other fields such as innovation, renewable energy, investment, logistics, technology, tourism, and agriculture.
The two countries have also strengthened coordination and mutual support at multilateral organizations and forums; improved the effectiveness of the political consultation mechanism between the two foreign ministries; and promoted the role of Vietnam and the UAE in the relationship between ASEAN and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).
Economic cooperation has always been an important pillar and bright spot in the bilateral cooperation. The UAE is now Vietnam's largest trading partner in the Middle East-North Africa region.
Statistics of the General Department of Customs and the Ministry of Industry and Trade show that two-way trade between Vietnam and the UAE in 2016-2020 stood at USD 5-5.5 billion per year.
In 2021, the figure reached USD 5.3 billion, up 21 percent year-on-year. In the first three months of 2023, two-way trade hit USD 1.12 billion, surging by 22.14 percent compared to the same period last year.
Currently, Vietnamese goods account for about 2.2 percent of the import market share in the UAE, while the Middle East country marks up about 0.2 percent of Vietnam's import market share.
The two nations are striving to lift two-way trade to 10 billion USD and above in the near future.
Regarding investment cooperation, the UAE is one of the major investors in Vietnam with projects such as Hiep Phuoc Port and Halong Star Hotel, and tourism projects in central Da Nang city with a total investment capital of about USD 4 billion.
The potential for economic and trade cooperation between Vietnam and the UAE still remains huge because the two economies have complementary strengths, especially when the CEPA is signed.
According to Luong Hoang Thai, Director of the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT)’s Multilateral Trade Policy Department, CEPA will help Vietnam not only export goods directly to the UAE, but also make inroads into the Middle East market through the "UAE gateway".
Experts said that CEPA will be a legal basis for the two countries to strengthen cooperation in oil and gas exploration and production, share technical expertise, and train high-quality human resources in this industry.
At present, there are about 3,500 Vietnamese laborers working legally in the UAE, mainly in construction, mechanical, shipbuilding, and service.
With the available cooperation potential and efforts of both sides, the friendship and economic, trade and investment cooperation between Vietnam and the UAE are expected to be developed fruitfully, for the benefit of their people.-(VNA/VLLF)