EU, Vietnam boost all-round cooperation

(VOV) - The European Council President’s upcoming visit to Vietnam aims to promote bilateral cooperation within the cooperation framework of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA).

The President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, and his wife will begin an official visit to Vietnam from October 31- November 2 at the invitation of President Truong Tan Sang.

This is his first visit to Vietnam since both sides established their diplomatic ties in 1990.

The European Union (EU) delegation to Vietnam was set up in 1996, which has helped Vietnam-EU relations grow and flourish considerably.

The EU is one of Vietnam’s top partners in various fields, especially in economics, trade and investment, which have positively contributed to Vietnam’s socio-economic growth and international integration.

The EU is also Vietnam’s large export market, second only to the US. Vietnam’s key exports to the bloc are footwear, garments and textiles, seafood, wood furniture, electronics and consumer goods.

EU member nations are among Vietnam’s leading investors. By the end of August this year, twenty claimed to have invested in 1,200 projects worth US$4.75 billion in the country.

For its part, Vietnam had a total of 33 investment projects estimated at US$107 million in 10 EU nations.

The EU is currently the second biggest bilateral ODA donor and biggest non-refundable aid provider for Vietnam boasting US$13 billion for the 1996-2012 period.

The European Council President’s visit shows the EU’s appreciation for Vietnam’s increasingly regional role and status as well as its wish to increase multifaceted cooperation with Vietnam.

The visit also aims to learn about Vietnam’s socio-economic situation, renewal process and international integration.

During the visit, the two sides will compare notes on international and regional issues of common concern and measures to strengthen bilateral cooperation at regional and international multilateral forums.