Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang: Room For Vietnam-Canada Bilateral Cooperation
|Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh meets Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on the sidelines of the G7 Hiroshima Summit, Japan, in May 2023. Photo: VGP
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the diplomatic relations between Vietnam and Canada (August 21, 1973-August 21, 2023), Vietnamese Ambassador to Canada Pham Vinh Quang highlighted the achievements of the relationship between the two countries as well as the future cooperation prospects.
Comprehensive cooperation in all fields
According to Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang, Vietnam and Canada have long been attached. The late Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau once supported the movement against the war in Vietnam and was the one who decided to establish diplomatic relations with Vietnam.
Over the past fifty years, the two countries promoted sustainable relations and gained many achievements. By 2017, the two sides upgraded the relationship to a comprehensive partnership, cooperating in all fields.
In the field of politics and diplomacy, the two sides regularly maintain high-level delegation exchanges. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited Vietnam and on this occasion, the two countries established a comprehensive partnership. Our Prime Minister attended the G7 Summit in Canada in 2018.
Vietnam and Canada also share many common views on regional and international issues. The two sides maintain an annual political dialogue mechanism at the deputy minister level.
Along with state diplomacy, cooperation, exchange of Party and National Assembly channels and people-to-people exchanges have also been promoted. In 2021, the Vietnam-Canada Parliamentary Friendship Group was established and the Canada-Vietnam Parliamentary Friendship Group was established in 2022.
Trade and investment cooperation is the top priority of the two countries. Vietnam is Canada's largest trading partner in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), while Canada is Vietnam's second-largest trading partner, after the US, in the Americas.
Two-way trade turnover always achieves double-digit growth per year, reaching US$7 billion in 2022 (according to Canadian statistics, this figure is US$13 billion, including the number of goods transited through the US).
By the end of 2022, Canada ranked 14th out of 130 countries and territories investing in Vietnam, with nearly 250 projects worth nearly US$5 billion. Meanwhile, Vietnam also invested in Canada, reaching US$150 million, accounting for 47.5% of Vietnam's total investment capital abroad.
Cooperation at multilateral forums is an area where Vietnam and Canada share a lot. The two sides are part of the ASEAN partnership, working together within the framework of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), Francophonie, and United Nations. These are the basis for us to work closely with Canada on multilateral issues.
Room for cooperation
|Vietnam is Canada's largest trading partner in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), while Canada is Vietnam's second-largest trading partner, after the US, in the Americas.
Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang said that over the past 50 years, the relationship between Vietnam and Canada gained many achievements, but the potential of the two sides still remains.
Regarding political and diplomatic cooperation, the two countries share many common views on regional and international issues.
Both Vietnam and Canada aspire to build a peaceful, stable, and developed Asia-Pacific region based on the observance of principles of international law such as the Charter of the United Nations (UN) and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982.
The two sides also want to build order, rules, and regulations in the seas, including the East Sea.
In terms of economy, trade, and investment, Canada is a member of the Group of Seven (G7), the 14th largest economy in the world. Meanwhile, Vietnam is a developing economy, with about 100 million people, an agile and qualified workforce.
This is a big market, attracting foreign investment. Canada sees the Vietnamese market as a gateway for them to enter ASEAN as well as the Asia-Pacific market.
Vietnam can take advantage of Canada's strengths in advanced science and technology to support its development in the process of industrialization and modernization of the country, in infrastructure development, green economy, clean energy, energy transition, and responding to climate change.
Bringing cooperation to the next level
Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang shared, that 2023 is a memorable year when the two countries celebrated the 50th anniversary of the establishment of cooperative relations.
This is an opportunity for us to look back and organize activities to contribute to the effective development of bilateral relations, in line with the set goal of a comprehensive partnership between Vietnam and Canada.
The Vietnamese Embassy in Canada and the Vietnamese Consulate General in Vancouver have plans to organize a series of events in 2023.
These events are also associated with activities organized by Vietnamese ministries and sectors in Vietnam, as well as a series of events organized by the Canadian Embassy in Hanoi in collaboration with the Canadian Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City.
The Vietnamese Embassy in Canada plan to hold an official celebration in Ottawa, with the participation of officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, ministries and branches of Canada, and the Vietnamese community.
|Taste of Vietnam Festival held in Toronto. Photo: WVR
The Embassy will also coordinate to organize "Vietnamese Culture Day" in a number of major Canadian cities to introduce Vietnam's economic, cultural, and social achievements and national cultural identity.
In addition, supporting activities on tourism, food, and forums for Vietnamese students will be organized to increase the understanding of Vietnam to Canadians.
The Ambassador hoped that with the above activities this year, Vietnam and Canada could further promote bilateral cooperation to a higher level.
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