If TPP is implemented, Vietnam’s textile & garment export turnover to the US would increase by 30-40 per cent in the first year of the agreement and would increase two-fold after three to four years, according to analysts. The US consumes 50 per cent of Vietnam’s total textile & garment export turnover.
In October 2016 alone, Vietnam exported $9.476 billion worth of textile & garment products to the US. This means that export turnover would reach $16 billion by 2018, an increase of $3 billion and to $20 billion by 2020.
However, the figures may be unattainable after Donald Trump, who takes office as the 45th US President on January 20, is against the TPP because of concern about jobs for US citizens as the domestic industry will have to compete with imports from TPP countries.
Truong Van Cam, Vitas’ secretary general however maintained that Vietnam will still see its textile & garment exports to the US increasing with or without TPP. In recent years, the export turnover to the market has been growing steadily by 12-13 per cent per annum, while the US import turnover has been growing by 3 per cent only. Vietnam’s products just account for 9 per cent of the US total textile & garment imports.
According to Le Quoc An, a textile & garment expert and former chair of Vitas, there are three possible scenarios for Vietnam. First, TPP could take effect, but the content of the agreement would change. If so, Vietnam’s export turnover to the US would be 50 per cent lower than initially designed. Second, TPP fails. If so, Vietnam’s exports to the US will still enjoy MFN like other WTO members. In this case, exports would depend on US economic performance. Third, there is no TPP, and the Trump administration imposes a monitoring scheme and anti-dumping duties on imports from Asia, including Vietnam. If so, Vietnam’s exports would decrease.