Photo for illustration (Photo: VNA)

Tran Ngoc Binh, from the Import and Export Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, said many opportunities and pressures will await the rubber sector after the deal comes into effect.

He explained that natural rubber will enjoy zero percent import duty in member countries of the CPTPP.

“This creates opportunities for Vietnamese natural rubber to expand the market. However, the domestic rubber sector will have to face a fierce competition since natural rubber production countries will step up exports to Vietnam,” Binh added.

The countries will also completely scrap tariffs imposed on rubber products within 16 years, according to the official.

He suggested businesses abide by regulations on product origin in order to utilize tax incentives as committed.

Tran Thi Thuy Hoa, from the Vietnam Rubber Association (VRA), highlighted the common development trend of the world’s rubber sector that commits to sustainable development, with higher productivity and quality.

To bring into full play advantages offered by the integration process in order to expand the market, the Vietnamese rubber sector should focus on building its brand name, while ensuring quality, prestige and sustainable development, she said.

The official said local firms can promote their prestige by observing laws and policies towards labourers, and perform their social responsibility.

She also proposed rubber associations intensify the public-private partnership (PPP) in management to look towards sustainable development.

Vietnam currently ranks third globally in natural rubber production and export, according to the VRA.

The association revealed that in 2017, the country earned USD2.3 billion from export of 1.4 million tonnes of natural rubber, up 36 percent in value and 11.4 percent in volume year on year.

The Vietnam Rubber Group alone produced over 250,000 tonnes of rubber latex and earned revenue of VND21.38 trillion (USD936 million), exceeding the plan by 20 percent. Its pre-tax profit reached over VND4.1 trillion (USD179.58 million), surpassing the yearly plan by 36 percent. The firm contributed VND1.7 trillion (USD74.46 million) to the State budget, while paying its employees about VND7.1 million (USD310) each per month averagely.

The original Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was signed by 12 countries in February 2016 but US President Donald Trump pulled his country from the deal upon his inauguration in January 2017.

The remaining 11 countries, namely Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam, signed the pact and renamed it the CPTPP in March 2018 in Chile./.