cato by ajizai


									       WTO SEMINAR
     Hanoi, 5-6 August 2003

Review and status of Viet Nam's
WTO Accession – Working Party
  Report and market access

      by Mr. Cato Adrian, Counsellor
           Accession Division
                     Summary of Accession
•   Viet Nam applied for accession in January 1995. The General Council of the
    WTO decided to establish a Working Party to examine the application further
    at its meeting on 31 January 1995.

•   The Working Party met for the first time on 30-31 July 1998, and has since
    then held a further five meetings:

                                3 December 1998
                                 22-23 July 1999
                               30 November 2000
                                  10 April 2002
                                  12 May 2003.

•   The date of the seventh meeting of the Working Party has not been fixed, but
    might be held before the end of 2003.

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                           2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
               Summary of Accession cont’d.

•   Until the end of 2000, the Working Party essentially engaged in general fact-
    finding. The bilateral market negotiations on goods and services had not
    been initiated as the initial offers of Viet Nam were still pending. The
    multilateral process moved one step further following the preparation and
    circulation of a Factual Summary of Points Raised by the WTO Secretariat in
    September 2001.

•   Although the Factual Summary has the status of a "non-paper", and thus is
    not subject to formal examination by the Working Party, delegations are
    encouraged to make active use of it as they continue to review matters relevant
    for the future elaboration of the report of the Working Party and Viet Nam's
    Protocol of Accession. A revised Factual Summary was made available to
    delegations in April 2003, in time for the meeting in May.

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                            2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
                       Multilateral Process

•   As indicated in the Factual Summary, WTO Members have flagged a number
    of issues which will need further clarification, and/or current measures and
    practices that in their view will need to be eliminated or transformed to
    conform with WTO requirements.

•   The following list, which is illustrative rather than exhaustive, gives some
    indication of the extensive discussions taking place at present:

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                           2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
               Multilateral Process - Economic Policies


•   Foreign exchange policies. Limitations or restrictions on the convertibility of
    the Dong and international transfers, foreign currency surrender or self-
    balancing requirements for foreign investors.
•   Foreign investment policies: Approval procedures, access to incentives,
    safeguarding of confidential business information.
•   Progress in the privatization of State-owned enterprises.
•   Dual pricing of services


•   Administrative and judicial reform in Viet Nam. Establishment of an
    independent tribunal to consider appeals of administrative decisions in all
    matters affecting trade.
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                               2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
                      Multilateral Process - Goods


•   Trading rights: Limitations on the right of foreign-owned enterprises to
    import or export goods. Importation of designated items reserved for
    "specialized business enterprises".
•   Progress in the establishment of a transparent customs tariff based on the
    Harmonized System/ASEAN Harmonized Tariff Nomenclature
•   Coverage and justification for "other duties and charges", i.e. taxes and fiscal
    charges (in addition to customs duties) applied to imports but not to
    domestically-produced goods.
•   Fees and charges for services rendered;             very high charges for
    infrastructural services compared to other countries in the region, possibly
    applied in a manner providing less favourable treatment for imported goods
    relative to domestically-produced goods.
•   Application of internal taxes – in particular differential tax rates applied to
    cigarettes and beer.

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                             2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
               Multilateral Process - Goods cont’d
•   Import prohibitions, quantitative restrictions and licensing. Coverage and
    justification. Import ban on cigarettes, certain combustion engines and
    second-hand motor vehicle spare parts. Import quotas on motor vehicles and
    other products. Licensing procedures. Transparency.
•   Elimination of minimum import prices. Implementation of WTO–consistent
    customs valuation rules.
•   Establishment of trade remedy legislation and related enforcement
•   Export restrictions on rice, wood, and wood products.
•   The operation of the Export Support Fund and other types of export
    subsidies accorded to non-agricultural products
•   Incentives applied to export-oriented production
•   Technical Barriers to Trade: Availability of TBT-related information;
    establishment of a TBT enquiry point; implementation of the Code of Good
    Practice for the preparation, adoption and implementation of standards.

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                           2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
         Multilateral Process Goods - cont’d

• Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures: Publication of proposed
  measures and allowing a reasonable period for comment, establishment
  of an operational enquiry point.
• Trade-Related Investment Measures. Local content requirements in
  automobile and motorcycle manufacturing and mechanical engineering.
  Export requirement (80 per cent) for some industrial projects.
• State Trading: Establishment of a list of enterprises subject to regular
• Incentives accorded to enterprises locating in export processing zones.
• Government procurement legislation and practices, participation in
  the WTO Committee on Government Committee, plans for future
  participation in the Agreement on Government Procurement.

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                     2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
              Multilateral Process - TRIPS + Other

• Level of protection of intellectual property in Viet Nam. Participation in
   international intellectual property agreements. Review of existing legislation
   and plans to introduce additional legislation to conform with the TRIPS
   Agreement.      Enforcement – recourse to administrative, civil judicial
   procedures and remedies, special border measures, criminal procedures and
   level of penalties. Uniformity in IP fees and charges for foreigners and

• Publication of trade-related legislation, administrative rulings and other trade-
  related matters.
• Trade agreements – extension of tariff preferences accorded on a bilateral
  basis to all WTO Members.

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                            2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
                Multilateral Process - Agriculture

•   Viet Nam provided agriculture support tables in the form of a non-paper,
    providing a useful exchange with interested WTO Members at a plurilateral
    meeting held on the fringes of the meeting of the Working Party in November

•   A formal submission of domestic support and export subsidy tables from
    Viet Nam was circulated through the Secretariat in November 2002. These
    tables were discussed at a plurilateral meeting on 13 May 2003

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                           2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
             Multilateral Process - Agriculture cont’d

•   Apart from technical issues relating to the proper classification of programmes
    as "Green Box" or development subsidies or "Amber Box", methods of
    calculation, product specific versus non-product specific support, data sources,
    etc. the following points may be noted as issues that will be the subject of
    further discussion and negotiation:

-   Viet Nam's choice of reference period (1999-2001)
-   Inclusion of de minimis support in total AMS
-   Viet Nam's support to its coffee sector
-   The inclusion of tax exemptions or preferential tax treatment in domestic support
-   The introduction and management of tariff rate quotas to regulate market access
-   Recourse to export subsidies. Several Members have already requested that Viet Nam
    bind its export subsidies at zero from the date of accession

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                              2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,
              Bilateral Market Access Negotiations
                     on Goods and Services
•   Viet Nam tabled initial offers for the market access negotiations on goods,
    covering agricultural and non-agricultural goods, in January 2002. A revised
    offer, pertaining only to non-agricultural products was circulated in
    November 2002.
•   The initial offer of specific commitments for trade in services was
    circulated in January 2002. Viet Nam tabled a revised offer through the
    Secretariat in March 2003.
•   Several Members have already engaged in negotiations with Viet Nam, or
    stated their intent to join in the negotiations at some point in the future,
             United States                  New Zealand
             European                       Japan
             Communities                    Korea
             Chinese Taipei                 China
             Canada                         Paraguay
             Australia                      India

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                              2003, Cato Adrian, Counsellor,

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