Vietnam is among the top 5 seafood producing and exporting countries in the world, so free trade agreements often have a significant impact on the development of the industry. On November 13, 2020, the strong research group of the Faculty of Fisheries, Vietnam National University of Agriculture (VNUA), in collaboration with the Belgian Embassy in Hanoi, organized a seminar entitled “The impact of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) for the sustainable development of the fisheries sector”.

Ngài Paul Jansen, Đại sứ Bỉ tại Việt Nam phát biểu khai mạc hội thảo và nhấn mạnh an toàn thực phẩm và bảo vệ môi trường là chìa khóa để phát triển bền vững ngành thủy sản.

Belgian ambassador to Vietnam Paul Jansen gives the opening speech of the seminar and emphasizes that food safety and environmental protection are the key to the sustainable development of the fisheries sector.

Participating in the workshop were representatives from domestic and international organizations, state management agencies, research institutes, universities and some enterprises. Among the international participants were Mr. Paul Jansen, the Belgian Ambassador to Vietnam, Mr. Ivo Hooge, the First Secretary in charge of Development Cooperation - Embassy of Belgium in Vietnam, University of Liège and some other delegates. The Vietnamese participants included the Vietnam General Directorate of Fisheries, Agro Processing and Market Development Authority, Vietnam Institute of Fisheries Economics and Planning, Can Tho University, Hue University, Foreign Trade University, Hanoi University of Technology, Research Institute for Aquaculture 1, and Dabaco Company, etc. as well as some media agencies.


Mr. Le Thanh Hoa, Deputy Director of the Agro-Processing and Market Development Authority, presents the development of Vietnam-EU seafood trade


Assoc.Prof.Dr. Nguyen Quang Linh, Director of Hue University, talks about the training on aquatic human resources

Vietnam has integrated internationally through the signing of bilateral Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) and joining multilateral organizations, of which, EVFTA is considered as new generation free trade agreement with extensive and comprehensive commitments. The deep commitment and strict enforcement mechanism, which even covers areas considered as "non-traditional" such as labor, environment, transparency, and investment dispute settlement mechanism, etc. Many believe that the EVFTA is an opportunity to deeply integrate into the EU market of high value and high quality, but, there are also many challenges facing the sustainable development of the seafood industry.

Bà Trần Thị Nắng Thu, VNUA, trình bày về an toàn thực phẩm thủy sản - rào cản kỹ thuật của EVFTA 

Assoc.Prof.Dr. Tran Thi Nang Thu, VNUA, makes a presentation on aquatic food safety and technical barriers of the EVFTA

Ông Bách Văn Hạnh, Tổng cục Thủy sản chia sẻ về tổ chức sản xuất thủy sản đáp ứng các quy định EVFTA 

Mr. Bach Van Hanh, Directorate of Fisheries shares about seafood production organizations that meet EVFTA’s regulations

Participants in the seminar shared their views on the potentials, difficulties, challenges, opportunities, and technical barriers in Vietnam - EU seafood trade in the context of implementation of the EVFTA.

The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the sustainable development of the fisheries sector, the origin of goods, policy institutions, food safety, environmental protection and a number of other technical barriers were the prominent topics mentioned in the seminars. Some research results on farming solutions to improve the safety of aquatic products of various universities such as Vietnam National University of Agriculture, Can Tho University, and Hue University funded by the Belgian government were also shared in the seminar.

Dr. Tran Minh Phu, Can Tho University, introduces the results of a project funded by the Kingdom of Belgium on using herbs in aquaculture to ensure food safety.

Dr. Le Thi Thanh Loan, VNUA, presents the policies on Vietnamese seafood

The workshop has created an opportunity for partners participating in the production chain to better understand the impact of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) on the fisheries sector, and become more aware of the roles and participation of the related parties as well as achieve orientation in their operation in the coming time to serve the sustainable development of the industry.