A fair, transparent, and efficient international trading system is essential on the global ‘playground,’ Vietnamese State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc stressed on Thursday at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) CEO Summit 2022 in Thailand.
The three-day summit commenced in Thailand on Wednesday with the participation of more than 850 leaders of world and regional businesses, as well as representatives from international organizations.
President Phuc is one of the keynote speakers of this year’s event, along with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, French President Emmanuel Macron, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, and U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris.
Addressing a discussion on the future of trade and investment amid opportunities and challenges for cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region, President Phuc shared four ideas that he believed are significant for trade and investment in the region and the world in general.
First, President Phuc noted that trade and investment activities need guarantees from an impartial, transparent, and effective international trading system, adding that ensuring such a system is crucial for all businesses on the global ‘playground.’
Second, digital transformation is an inevitable and objective trend that is taking place around the world and is positively influencing cross-border trade as well as the global economy.
Third, after the difficulties and challenges suffered over the past two years, the world and the region in particular are building resilient and sustainable supply chains with diversified supply sources, effective monitoring mechanisms, and traceability.
Lastly, in light of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change, fields such as healthcare, biotechnology, clean energy, and carbon emissions reduction will strongly attract foreign direct investment (FDI) in the near future, the president said.
With the theme of 'Embrace, Engage, Enable,' this year’s APEC CEO Summit consists of 15 discussion sessions focused on issues of importance to the development of the regional and global economies.
Areas of focus include creative innovation, regional trade and investment challenges, inclusive and sustainable growth, post-pandemic health, digital transformation, employment trends, energy security, food security, and the future of APEC.
President Phuc also told the summit that Vietnam has so far signed and implemented some 60 agreements on investment promotion and protection, as well as 15 free trade agreements, including the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), the Vietnam News Agency reported.
He also announced Vietnam’s priorities in foreign investment attraction, including advanced technologies, high efficiency, and environmental protection.
According to international forecasts, Vietnam’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to expand 7.2 percent this year and 6.7 percent in 2023, among the highest growth rates in the Asia-Pacific region.
Following the summit, Phuc will attend the 29th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting scheduled for Friday through Saturday, as part of his four-day trip starting on Wednesday for an official visit to Thailand and attendance at these events in Bangkok.
As a trade block, APEC now has 21 member economies located mainly in Southeast Asia and East Asia, representing about 38 percent of the world’s population and accounting for nearly 61 percent of the global economy.