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First Hinrich Trade Negotiation Simulation held in Vietnam

Published 03 October 2018

The Hinrich Foundation, in partnership with Foreign Trade University and Information Technology Park, Vietnam National University, hosted the first Hinrich Trade Negotiation Simulation (HTNS) event in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, on September 15 and 16, 2018.

About 48 university students participated in the negotiation two-day forum held at the Foreign Trade University.

The Hinrich Trade Negotiation Simulation program is designed to encourage students to learn and understand the challenges and opportunities in the international trade arena, while developing their negotiating skills as future potential trade negotiators. The high-level discussions and debates stimulated by the program on real-world trade issues help students understand the effects and benefits of global trade.

The program also challenges students to forge balance in trade negotiations while keeping in mind the interests of both their individual countries and international community at large.

The event commenced with opening remarks from Hinrich Foundation Program Director Alexander Boome, who introduced the program and its benefits to the students. He was followed by Hinrich Foundation Research Fellow Stephen Olson, who shared his experience as a former trade negotiator and gave key insights as well as tips to the students on international trade negotiations.

During the event, students were divided into teams representing the countries of India, Japan, China, USA, Vietnam and Australia. They then assumed the role of trade negotiators and discussed real-world trade topics such as healthcare services, digital economy, agriculture (fisheries) subsidies and food non-tariff measures. In addition, they were in charge of dividing responsibilities among the team members, deciding their national negotiation priorities and preparing their opening remarks as a country. Meanwhile, Hinrich Foundation team members were on hand to provide guidance and negotiation strategies to the teams during the event.

After making their opening remarks, the teams called upon trade negotiators from other countries for intensive debates on issues hindering a possible solution. The teams carefully formulated their positions while taking into consideration the compromises they had reached with other nation’s teams.

Following the conclusion of negotiations and consensus by the delegates, the teams drafted a joint communique which contained the text agreed upon by all the participating countries. The event closed with a final remark of appreciation and distribution of certificates to all participants.

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Pragya Bhatnagar

Pragya Bhatnagar is a former Research Associate with the Hinrich Foundation where he focused on International Trade Research.

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