Fisheries sector ready to capitalise on EVFTA opportunities

Following its recent ratification by the National Assembly, the European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) is expected to present a window of opportunity for local seafood businesses to accelerate their exports as we move into the post-novel coronavirus period, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers.
fisheries sector ready to capitalise on evfta opportunities
The terms of the trade deal will see nearly 50% of tax lines that are currently subject to a tax rate of between 0% and 22% slash to 0% immediately after the pact comes into force.

The remaining tax lines that follow the current rate of between 5.5% and 26% will be reduced to 0% over the course of the subsequent three to seven years.

Most notably, once the EVFTA comes into effect, a number of processed products that have high basic tax rates of 20% will enjoy a substantial reduction to 0%, including oysters, clams, scallops, squid, octopus, and processed abalone.

Moreover, other seafood products such as frozen squid and octopus which pay tax rates of between 6% and 8%, respectively, are set to see the rates drop to 0%.

Elsewhere, frozen shrimp and tiger shrimp products are expected to enjoy a reduction in tax rate from 20% to 0%, while other shrimp products will follow the reduction roadmap set out for the next three to five years. Indeed, processed shrimp will adhere to the seven-year tax reduction roadmap.

Aside from the fundamental benefits that come from the reduction in import and export duties brought about by the EVFTA, the seafood sector will see improved prospects for the expansion of export markets, along with the increased competitiveness in comparison to other rivals such as India and Thailand which have yet to sign an FTA with the EU.

Simultaneously, the trade deal is projected to create a range of opportunities to attract foreign investment, improve production technology, boost product quality, and give fresh impetus for the opening up of market whilst capturing the attention and interest of both domestic and European businesses.

To take full advantage of the EVFTA and overcome challenges, economists have advised seafood enterprises to be flexible when applying the rules of origin set by the FTAs, whilst proactively seeking and developing material sources in the country and from FTA partners.

Local firms have also urged to focus on intensifying connectivity in a bid to improve productivity, product quality, and ensuring food safety and hygiene standards are met, while actively seeking co-operation alongside foreign partners to speed up the use of technological innovations.

Source: VOV
english.vov.vn

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