US Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel J. Kritenbrink addresses the ceremony in Hanoi on November 8 (Photo: VietnamPlus)

Hanoi (VNA) – The American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) in Hanoi held a ceremony on November 8 to mark its 25th founding anniversary and 25 years of the normalisation of Vietnam-US economic relations.

The event took place during the trip to the Southeast Asian nation by Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Louis Ross Jr. and 17 businesses from the US.

Looking back on the last 25 years, Executive Director of AmCham Hanoi Adam Sitkoff said the two countries’ peoples believe that the US and Vietnam have overcome the past to build such a strong and extensive relationship like at present.

However, he noted, much still needs to be done and AmCham will continue to serve as a bridge linking business leaders with the government to create an attractive, transparent and stable business environment in Vietnam.

[US forecasts bright outlook for trade with Vietnam]

As an American entrepreneur in Vietnam, David Stone from the AES Vietnam company, who is also a leader of AmCham Hanoi, said trade and investment form the foundation of the US-Vietnam relations.

The energy agreement that AES signed this time is the latest demonstration of the fact that operations of US businesses in Vietnam have helped the country become more modern, productive, efficient, and safer, he added.

Within the framework of the ceremony, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross congratulated the participants in a leadership capacity training course, a new programme of AmCham to bring more study and connection chances to young Vietnamese business leaders. This programme is also part of AmCham’s commitment to creating long-term economic and social values for Vietnam.

US businesses believe that trade and investment form the foundation of the US-Vietnam relations (Photo: VietnamPlus)

He highlighted the special significance of the trade ties between the two countries, voicing his belief in the success of the freshly inked commercial contracts between Vietnamese and US firms in the fields of energy, health care and aviation, as well as new cooperation opportunities in the future.

According to the Vietnamese Ministry of Industry and Trade, bilateral trade revenue increased from only 220 million USD in 1994, when the US officially lifted economic sanctions on Vietnam, to 1.4 billion USD in 2001, the year before the bilateral trade agreement took effect.

Their trade surpassed 58.8 billion USD in 2018 and reached 35.4 billion USD in the first half of 2019. Vietnam is now the sixth largest exporter and ranks 16th among trade partners of the US.

Also on November 8, Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross had a meeting with Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh.

Highlighting the enormous potential for stronger economic partnerships, especially in energy, aviation and construction, he expressed his hope that the Vietnamese Government will continue to make it easy for US businesses to expand trade and investment cooperation with Vietnamese partners for the sake of both nations.

He also thanked the Vietnamese Government for making unceasing efforts to improve the investment environment, consolidate investors’ trust, and create favourable conditions for US firms in particular and foreign businesses in general to effectively operate in the country in the long term.

Meanwhile, Minister Anh affirmed that the Government of Vietnam in general and the Ministry of Industry and Trade in particular wish to work closely with the US to continue developing bilateral relations in an extensive, substantive and effective manner, especially in the fields of economy, trade and investment.

Particularly, Vietnam has continually made efforts to better the investment climate, actively deal with the US’s proposals, and create an open and transparent business environment, he said, noting it has also worked to facilitate US-invested projects in the country and help with the firms’ long-term operations and sustainable development in line with local laws.

The Southeast Asian nation is taking many solutions to ensure harmonious and sustainable trade balance with the US, such as stepping up cooperative ties with the federal government and state administrations in the fields of mutual concern. It is also encouraging the import of goods and services from the US, Anh added./.

VNA