Vietnamese Ambassador to Norway Le Thi Tuyet Mai joined the Ambassadors of other ASEAN nations in the ASEAN Committee in Oslo (ACO) in a visit to Bodo, the capital of the northern region of Nordland, on November 3-4 to enhance all-round cooperation between the bloc and the European country.
According to the Vietnamese Embassy in Norway, the delegation had working sessions with Bodo Mayor Ida Pinnerod, and representatives from the University of Nordland, the Civil Aviation Authority of Norway, the Department of Economic Development of Nordland region’s Council, and several companies and organisations based in Nordland.
At the events, Ambassador Mai, who is also Chair of the ACO, presented opportunities in the ASEAN Community, which posts an annual GDP growth rate of over 5%, a combined market of more than 6 million people, and an immense market of the grouping’s free trade agreement partners.
She also highlighted the myriad of chances for increased collaboration in various spheres between Norway and ASEAN, particularly after the announcemen of their official partnership in August this year and the launching of the Norway-ASEAN Regional Initiatives Fund financed with 50 million NOK by the Norwegian Government.
Participants at the sessions underlined a number of cooperation opportunities for the two sides’ businesses, especially those in aquaculture, marine technology, information technology and communications, and sustainable energy production.
There is also good potential for exchanges and affiliation between Bodo-based universities, social organisations and state agencies and their ASEAN partners, they said.
The Vietnamese diplomat took the occasion to introduce the sound partnership between Vietnam and Norway, investment and business opportunities in the Southeast Asian nation, and the links between Bodo and Nordland region and Vietnamese localities.
The KUN Centre for Gender Equality, based in Nordland, has been active in implementing a cooperation project in gender equality between the Vietnamese Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs and the Norwegian Ministry of Children, Equality and Social Inclusion, she noted.
The ACO encompasses the Ambassadors of Indonesia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. The ACO Chair is rotated biannually, and Vietnam is in charge of the position in the last half of 2015.