European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement: Shrinking space for civil society

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30 September 2022. On the 20th of September 2022, International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) participated to the 5th meeting of the European Union Domestic Advisory Group (DAG) to the European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA). The meeting issued a strong statement that echoes the concerns of FIDH and its member league Vietnam Committee on Human Rights (VCHR).

The European Union Domestic Advisory Group (DAG) denounces the shrinking space for civil society in Vietnam and reiterates its call for the full respect of the rights of civil society organisations to scrutinize and monitor the implementation of the European Union-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) under the Trade and Sustainable Development (TSD) chapter.

It further recalls that TSD chapters in trade agreements can only live up to their promise if civil society is able to transparently monitor and scrutinize implementation and urges the European Union (EU) to address assertively the situation as human rights that are an essential element of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) between the EU and Vietnam, and consequently overarch the entire EVFTA, as recalled in the recent conclusions published in July 2022 by the EU Ombudsman.

For more information, see the Statement of EU Domestic Advisory Group of EU-Vietnam FTA.

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