Vietnamese people, industry and agriculture will increasingly need American World Class agricultural products to feed your people, to grow your livestock, to use technology, to grow food in an environmentally sustainable way, US Ambassador to Vietnam said.

What Vietnam Gain When 460 US Companies Allowed to Export Meat to Vietnam?
US Ambassador to Vietnam, Daniel Kritenbrink - Photo: Diep Nguyen
Yesterday, US and Vietnam delegates signed a memorandum of understanding between the two countries in which US – Vietnam trade relation is further enhanced. On this occasion, BizLIVE held the interview with US Ambassador to Vietnam, Daniel Kritenbrink. Following is the interview: 
What achievements has the 25 year relation brought for Vietnam and the US? What is the most impressive thing?  
The partnership between Vietnam and the US today is very broad, very deep. We're cooperating on everything from security, trade, to people to people ties, energy and health. So it's certainly one of the most promising parts of the whole relationship. 
I think the economic ties between the United States and Vietnam are incredibly strong. It's, it's clearly a central pillar of our partnership. And we're really excited because if you go back 25 years ago, our trade was almost zero. And now today, our annual bilateral trade is $77 billion. US exports to Vietnam were up 13 per cent last year to almost $11 billion. 
But at the same time, the trade deficit has grown substantially as well because of the Vietnam’s exports to the US has grown so rapidly. So what we're focused on is making sure that we open up the Vietnamese market so that there are no, barriers to American firms so we can compete fairly. 
And then we hope to encourage our Vietnamese friends to buy more American products as well, to help balance out the trade. And at the same time, we support our American companies who are invested in and doing so many great things like creating world class jobs to invest here. So far, the US companies in Vietnam has had many Corporate Social Responsibility activities, which really help out the public.
The other thing I would say is, even though our economic and trade relationship is incredibly positive, there are of course, some challenges as well. So we're working to make sure that our trade is also free, fair and balanced. And I think that involves doing some things to solve some of the market access barriers that are in Vietnam, and making the situation a bit more fair for American companies. But we see tremendous opportunities in Vietnam, very optimistic about the future.
You have said there are tremendous opportunities for American companies in Vietnam? What are they?
I think the energy sector is one of the most promising from developing infrastructure to import liquid natural gas (LNG) to using LNG to fire power plants, to working on renewable sources of energy and helping build grid. Many, many opportunities in energy similarly in healthcare. Vietnam is continuously developing and building its healthcare infrastructure. The same in the IT sector, aviation, transportation, infrastructure, smart cities,… There will be great incredible opportunities here for American companies.
Over the years, the United States is one of the largest investors in Vietnam. American businesses often tell me that they're impressed by Vietnam. They like the the stable environment here in Vietnam. They appreciate the government leadership in solving problems and ensuring that foreign invested enterprises can succeed here, and they're very impressed by the Vietnamese workforce which is young dynamic, as a hard working talented and increasingly well educated workforce. So they're great opportunities. 
So that why 45 US enterprises have just come to Vietnam on this occasion. And I know that a Memorandum of Understanding has been signed between the Vietnamese Minister of Investment and Trade and the chairman of the US – ASEAN Business Council? Could you please give more detail about the MOU?
I was happy to support the MOU to be signed between the US - ASEAN Business Council and the MIT. It’s an MOU on "Strengthening Industry and Trade cooperation". 
What I would say is that one, Vietnam is an incredibly important agricultural export market for the United States. It's our sixth largest agricultural export market worldwide. We think that as Vietnam develops, Vietnamese people, industry and agriculture will increasingly need American World Class agricultural products to feed your people, to grow your livestock, to use technology, to grow food in an environmentally sustainable way. 
What about opportunities for Vietnamese enterprises from the US market?
Well, I think they're limitless. As you know, the United States of America is Vietnam's largest export market. So I think Vietnam is doing very well. I think, if you look at Vietnamese trade, you know, it's everything from agricultural products to textiles, electronics, as well. So I think our trade is quite diverse, and they're great opportunities for both sides. And as long as we keep working, I think to make that trade more balanced and to break down whatever barriers exist here in the US market. I'm going to remain optimistic about our future.
Thank you very much!