|The reception to mark France's National Day in Ho Chi Minh City July 13, 2020 (Photo: VNA)
Since Vietnam and France established bilateral ties 47 years ago, they have established a strategic partnership with many important milestones, which have laid a firm foundation for more achievements in the future.
The Vietnam-France strategic partnership has progressed steadily in politics, economics, people exchanges, and provincial cooperation.
Economic cooperation develops rapidly
Bilateral economic cooperation has seen dramatic results. Two-way trade revenues increased from US$1.6 billion in 2009 to US$5.3 billion in 2019 (third in Europe, after Germany and the Netherlands). As of May, France had nearly 590 investment projects worth US$3.6 billion in Vietnam, second among European countries invested in Vietnam (after the Netherlands).
Vietnam, France, and the EU recently co-organized an online conference on the Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement. French businesses were briefed on Vietnam’s trade and investment policies, its market of nearly 100 million people, and its role as a gateway to an ASEAN market of 600 million people.
Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh told the meeting that Vietnam will expand cooperation in clean energy, renewable energy, high-tech, agriculture, processing, and manufacturing.
"We encourage foreign businesses to invest in areas that will benefit most from the EVFTA, such as garments, textiles, leather, footwear, and automobiles," he said. " I believe we’ll have many successful cooperative projects.”
Cooperation between localities in the two countries has been fruitful. There have been successful projects in urban management, the environment, healthcare, education, culture, tourism, and sustainable development.
First Vice President of the French Senate Philippe Dallier said “Over the past 20 years, cooperation between France and Vietnam has validated their dynamic, interest-sharing relationship again and again. Vietnam is the only Asian nation with such a relationship. The Vietnamese and French people can be proud of what they have achieved.”
Milestones in people diplomacy, local cooperation
People diplomacy has been strengthened over the last 47 years. Frequent contests and Francophonie festivals have helped people of the two countries understand each other better.
Vietnamese organizations and individuals have donated medical protective equipment to France. French Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City Vincent Floreani praised the generosity of the Vietnamese people and pledged to enhance France-Vietnam cooperation.
National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan has said sustainability is Vietnam's primary goal.
"Cultural heritage promotion must be sustainable. Education and health care need sustainable human resources. Climate change response demands flexibility in adapting to the changing environment. Economic development should rest on a sustainable foundation and urban planning should target sustainable development. Sustainability should be an important criterion in planning cooperation projects at national and local levels”, she said.