To improve trade performance and the international competitiveness of small-and-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), Switzerland and Viet Nam on Friday signed an agreement to implement the Trade Policy and Export Promotion (SwissTrade) project.
The project will run from 2021-2024 with a total budget of CHF 5.627 million (equivalent to VND148 billion or US$6.5 million). Switzerland's grant contribution is CHF 5.0 million, and the counterpart funding from the Government of Vietnam and beneficiaries is CHF 627,000.
The SwissTrade project will offer technical assistance to the Ministry of Industry and Trade in shaping the strategic direction of import and exports from Viet Nam over the next ten years.
The agreement will also help the ministry with public-private dialogue, allowing further exchanges between the private sector and national authorities.
It will also strengthen the capacity of Business Support Organizations in export promotion services to SMEs, improving their competitiveness and participation in global value chains.
Particular attention will be paid to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the digitalisation of Vietnamese SMEs.
The SwissTrade project will be implemented by the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the International Trade Center.
The project is a flagship of Switzerland's economic development cooperation. The new Cooperation Programme 2021-2024, under the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), aims at supporting Viet Nam in achieving market-based and sustainable growth. The programme focuses on promoting market-oriented and reliable economic framework conditions, and on enhancing the private sector's competitiveness and market access.
At the signing ceremony, the Swiss Ambassador to Viet Nam, Ivo Sieber, said that: "With this project, Switzerland continues its longstanding cooperation in trade development with Viet Nam. It will help strengthen the competitiveness of SMEs and supports a more performing, sustainable and inclusive trade development in Viet Nam."
Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Sinh Nhat Tan said that the project SwissTrade marked an important milestone in Viet Nam's implementation of the goals of the 13th Party Congress, the 10-year social-economic development strategy 2021 – 2030 and the five-year social-economic development plan 2021 – 2025.
"The project is not only fitting but also underscores both countries' commitment to Viet Nam's sustainable socio-economic development," Tan said. — VNS
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