EU-Vietnam Trade Agreement, Ouzo on the List of Protected GIs
One hundred and sixty-nine distinctive European food and drinks products from a specific geographical origin were protected from imitation on the Vietnamese market. The use of geographical indications (GIs) was reserved in Vietnam for products imported from the EU regions where they traditionally come from. Many greek products were included on the list of protected GIs such as Ouzo, Elia Kalamatas, Kasseri, Feta, Kalamata (olive oil), Masticha Chiou, Sitia Lasithiou Kritis (olive oil), a variety of wine (Nemea, Peloponnese, Samos) and Retsina Attikis. This will benefit European farmers and small businesses producing these traditional products and exporting them to Vietnam.
Table 1. Geographical Indications (GIs) of Greece
EU exports to Vietnam are taxed less from the 1st of August. This is the immediate effect of the entry into force of the EU-Vietnam trade agreement that will ultimately scrap duties on 99% of all goods traded between the two sides. Doing business in Vietnam will also become easier for European companies: they will now be able to invest and pitch for government contracts with equal chances to their local competitors.
The EU-Vietnam trade agreement will eliminate over 99% of all tariffs, and partly remove the rest through limited zero-duty quotas. Especially, the 65% of duties on EU exports to Vietnam will be eliminated at entry into force, with the remainder gradually removed over a 10-year period. EU duties on imports from Vietnam will be eliminated progressively over a 7-year period. Also, wines and spirits will be fully tariff-free after 7 years (down from tariffs of 50% and 48% respectively). This asymmetric approach takes into account the fact that Vietnam is a developing country. In addition, 23 European Spirits were included on the List of Protected Geographical Indications (GIs) of the Union (Table 2).
Table 2. Twenty three (23) European Spirits on the List of Protected GIs
Source: European Union