In less than two years, we have concluded trade agreements with 57 countries, representing £193 billion of the UK`s bilateral trade. This is unprecedented. No other country has ever negotiated so many trade agreements at the same time. The government`s goal is to conclude free trade agreements within three years with countries that cover 80% of British trade. First, it is an operational necessity for both countries. Brexit means that the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, which entered into force on 1 August 2020, will no longer apply to the UK after 31 December 2020. Second, both the UK and Vietnam are working to conclude this agreement as quickly as possible in order to increase their economic recovery from COVID-19. Third, the terms of the UK-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement in 2020 will largely resemble the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, meaning the two countries will not need negotiations for a decade. The foreign minister will now travel to Vietnam, one of Asia`s fastest-growing economies, to conclude a new rollover trade deal. On 11th December Britain and Vietnam signed an agreement concluding negotiations for a free trade agreement (UKVFTA) between the two countries. On 23 June 2016, the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union and on 29 March 2017, the United Kingdom invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union and formally initiated the withdrawal process (“Brexit”).1 Negotiations are underway to define the conditions under which the United Kingdom will leave the European Union (“Withdrawal Negotiations”). The UK`s separation from the EU customs union and the accompanying EU trade agreements should be a key aspect of the withdrawal.
As a non-member of the European Union, the United Kingdom is no longer entitled to the preferential trade conditions available in EU free trade agreements. Digital trade between Britain and Singapore is now more important than ever, as businesses are increasingly online in the economy after the pandemic. The agreement will also strengthen trust and collaboration between and between regulators in both countries. Our two nations have common ambitions for technology and innovation, and the trade agreement will make it even easier for technology companies to succeed in our respective countries. Technology leaders see a natural fit with markets in the UK and Singapore, as they focus on innovation, entrepreneurship, technology and simple business activity. Apart from the three possibilities mentioned above, trade between Vietnam and the United Kingdom would take place under the conditions of the WTO`s MOST FAVOURED NATION (MFN), which are the standard trade rules applicable to two WTO member countries that do not have a preferential agreement. At present, trade between the EU and Vietnam is ongoing until the entry into force of NAFTA under the most frequented conditions. Britain and Singapore have strong track records when it comes to scaling innovation across sectors and regions, and Tech Nation therefore welcomes today`s pioneering trade deal as an important milestone for the global tech sector. It is also possible that trade between the United Kingdom and Vietnam could benefit from NAFTA in the following circumstances: (1) a transitional withdrawal period; (2) the United Kingdom, which remains a member of the EU Customs Union; or (3) a separate free trade agreement between Vietnam and Great Britain, based on NAFTA terms. The expected announcement was made during British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab`s two-day visit to Hanoi, the Vietnamese capital, from September 29 to 30. During the visit, Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc expressed hope that his government will soon conclude a free trade agreement with Britain. Since EIFTA will provide a solid foundation for a long-term partnership, both countries should go beyond the focus on short-term benefits.
They should take advantage of this agreement to address the main challenges of both countries and benefit more from global integration. Hanoi is also one of the most enthusiastic participants in the 11-country CPTPP Free Trade Agreement, which succeeds the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. The deal was painstakingly brokered by U.S. President Barack Obama before his successor Donald Trump tore the U.S. apart.