Vietnam Needs Foreign Expertise for Law Reforms to Meet WTO's Rules

3:26:30 PM | 7/8/2005

Vietnam Needs Foreign Expertise for Law Reforms to Meet WTO's Rules


Vietnam will need to hire foreign experts to help modify laws and regulations if the country wants to join World Trade Organisation in December this year, a senior government advisor said Wednesday.


Nguyen Xuan Thang, director of Vietnam's World Economic and Politic Institute, told the Vietnam Financial Times newspaper which is published by the Finance Ministry, that because investment is key to the country's economic growth, "It's a constant task for the authorities to improve the investment environment, and transparency in the country's legal framework is prerequisite," he said.


"Unlike other countries such as Laos, Cambodia or Mianma whose development is mainly depended on cheap labor, resources and land availability, Vietnam's growth is primely based on the investment drive, which only becomes effective if the country's investment policies are transparent," Thang said.


As time is soon running out because the country's leaders have insisted that Vietnam should join the WTO by December this year, "We must considering to hire foreign experts who can help speed up our legal reforms because we need to change up to 200 laws in the coming time," he noted.


Current law-making procedures are very cumbersome and the local authorities would need more than five years to be able to pass new laws which meet WTO's entry conditions, he added.


He called for substantial awareness from the authorities on the necessity to build a positive image for Vietnam, making it "the country of proactive integration."


He also warned that if the government of Vietnam continues maintaining their economic-social policies, the country's GDP growth will hardly meet the 8.5 per cent target set by the lawmakers for this year.


"For example, our investment effectiveness remains low - we have to invest US$5.6 to generate US$1 of profit, while in other countries they often spend  US$3 for US$1," Thang said.


Vietnam started negotiating with WTO members in 1995, but the country was only indicating a real interest for its future membership from 2003. It needs to complete negotiations with 21 countries - including China and the U.S - before June.

  • P.V