The U.S. government has entered an agreement with Vietnam to work together with the Southeast Asian country on security and facilitation of legitimate trade.
The Customs Mutual Assistance Agreement (CMAA) was signed by the U.S. embassy’s Deputy Chief of Mission Caryn McClelland and Vietnamese Vice Minister of Finance Vũ Thị Mai in Hanoi on Dec. 6.
These agreements allow for the exchange of information, intelligence and documents between the U.S. and other countries to prevent and investigate customs violations. Each agreement is tailored to the capacities and national policy of an individual country’s customs administration, CBP said.
“This agreement is a critical step forward in our economic and security partnership with Vietnam,” said CBP’s Deputy Assistant Commissioner for International Affairs E. Erik Moncayo in a statement. “The CMAA will enable the U.S. and Vietnam to more effectively combat terrorism and transnational crime while facilitating increasing volumes of lawful commerce.”
According to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, trade in U.S. goods and services with Vietnam totaled $62.6 billion in 2018, with exports at $12.1 billion and imports at $50.5 billion. Vietnam is currently the United States’ 17th-largest goods trading partner.
In addition to Vietnam, the U.S. now has 82 CMAAs with other customs administrations around the world.