EU, Vietnam sign free trade deal, remove nearly all tariffs
"Today's signature is not the end of our relations but the beginning of far more ambitious ties. The EU and Vietnam can do great things together," said EU Commission head Jean-Claude Juncker after talks with Vietnamese Prime Minister Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.
The agreement followed two and a half years of intense negotiations between the 28-nation European Union and Vietnam, whose two-way trade has grown three-fold to 28 billion euros ($30 billion) in the last 10 years.
The EU and Vietnam in August reached an agreement in principle and only had a few legal hurdles to overcome to finalise the deal. ■