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National Assembly ratifies protocol on WTO accession

With a majority of votes for, the National Assembly at a live broadcast session on Nov. 28 afternoon passed a resolution to ratify a protocol on Viet Nam's participation in the agreement on the establishment of World Trade Organisation (WTO) .

The resolution required the National Assembly and the Government to continue examine and revise legal documents, issue new laws in accordance with its WTO commitments, and work out a detailed action plan to implement the commitments.

Before this final legal procedure for the country's membership to the WTO, the National Assembly spent almost of the working day hearing the State President's report requesting the National Assembly to ratify Viet Nam's accession to the WTO, the Government's report on the results of negotiations, the NA Standing Committee's verification report and discussed other related matters.

A report by Minister of Trade Truong Dinh Tuyen explained the results from the 11-year negotiations, analysis of impacts from WTO accession, the ratification of the protocol on joining WTO and a number of related proposals.

Presenting the NA Standing Committee's verification report, the Chairman of the NA Committee for External Relations said the NA saw that the commitments on common policies in WTO conform with the renewal and international integration policies of the Vietnamese Party and State, conforming with Viet Nam's Constitution and law.

In regards to a matter of great interest to voters, the subsidies policy on farm produce, the National Assembly required the Government basing on WTO regulations and international rules to distinguish between forms of subsidies which are allowed and not allowed, and clearly define in agricultural development policies to ensure the benefits of farmers who account for a majority of the population.

Concerning garments and textiles, a more sensitive and important export product, the NA asked the Government to explain the mechanism to take special defensive measures in import, export, analyse relations between this mechanism and the US mechanism to monitor imported garments and textiles and to automatically file anti-dumping lawsuits, which will serve as a basis for businesses to develop production and export plans.

On the commitments to open the market for goods and services, the NA required the Government to properly deal with the relationship between domestic production protection and high-quality imports with low prices while ensuring State budget revenues, and if required to revise the roadmap to increase the competitive edge of certain products.

Affirming the opportunities created by WTO accession, the NA Standing Committee also pointed out challenges and work to be done after the country joins the largest world trade body, including continued revision of laws in accordance with WTO commitments and ensuring a transparent law making process.

NA deputies then continued analysing opportunities and challenges created by WTO accession to the economy, the society and people. Many deputies required careful analysis of challenges and risks in the integration process in order to devise a long-term detailed plan to mitigate negative impacts on economic development, culture, especially on social division, the gap between rich and poor and unemployment.

NA Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong affirmed the great efforts of the Government's negotiators and relevant agencies who contributed to the success of the negotiations for WTO accession. He also spoke about the work to be done, opportunities and challenges to overcome.

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