EU-Vietnam Trade Deal fails to regulate imported backpackers - The Durian - Hanoi's Smelliest News


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EU-Vietnam Trade Deal fails to regulate imported backpackers

Hoàn Kiếm, Hanoi – In what has been dubbed a historic trade deal between one of the largest trading blocs and a developing country, last week saw the EU Trade Ambassador finally finish signing a comprehensive Free Trade Agreement with Vietnam.

The deal, which has been years in the making with a further year spent signing each page in triplicate – in accordance with Vietnam’s proclivity for bureaucracy – aims to take an EU-certified knife to tariffs, slashing export duties on approximately 99 percent of goods imported to Europe.

However, sources familiar with the deal claim that it all very nearly fell apart on several occasions due to Vietnam’s demand that the EU apply their own standards to exported backpackers flooding the Vietnamese market.

“This is a milestone agreement,” EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmström told press at a briefing in Hanoi, “It heralds a new era of cooperation and trade between the EU and the great nation of Vietnam, but under no circumstances will we be regulating the flow of ukulele-toting shoeless cretins on parental-funded spiritual journeys across Vietnam.”

Commissioner Malmström’s comments were met with a confused and faltering applause as the realisation dawned on the nation’s press that this deal ensured a free-flow of human slurry into Vietnam.

“It is neither within our interests or budget to perform the rigorous quality checks required for us to guarantee that crusty European backpackers won’t parade their warty genitalia around in public, pass out drunkenly in a puddle of their own rapidly cooling filth, or act like total fucking skidmarks on pub crawls organised by their $2-a-night hostels – although we do expect to see an uptick in quality when the UK finally fucks the fuck off out of the EU,” reasoned Malmström.

Last year alone Vietnam braced its shores against a painfully hip, seemingly shower-proof horde of 2.1 million backpackers from Europe, leaving the nation’s tour operators and bed bugs rubbing their hands in anticipation for growth in 2019.

“Yeah, sure it’s great and all, probably gonna improve the livelihoods of the Vietnamese people, cool, but when are we going to talk about the bearded, beer-chugging, fire-breathing white elephant in the room that is low-grade backpackers?” shouted one local government aide who wished to remain anonymous for reasons that are obvious to anyone with even a cursory understanding of history.

“Man, they bent us over and fucked us without an EU regulation condom,” added the intoxicated civil servant.

Critics of the deal were disappointed with the EU’s apparent lack of testicles, with representatives of member states citing Vietnam’s “tarnished human rights records, neutered press freedoms, minimal transparency, lack of democracy and the silencing of activists both on and offline,” as obstacles to overcome.

In rebuttal, representatives of the EU trade commission said they felt that the sheer pestilence, stinginess and all-round ignorance offered by European backpackers more than balanced the deal out.

As the EU-Vietnam deal awaits ratification later this year, some 6300 miles away in the UK, Brexit negotiators were looking on in abject despair.

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