Washington D.C (VNA) - On the occasion of US President Donald Trump’s tour of Asia, as well as his attendance in the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting and State visit to Vietnam, the Vietnam News Agency's resident correspondent in Washington D.C had an interview with David Shear, former US Ambassador to Vietnam and former Assistant Secretary of Defense. Following is the content of the interview.
Former US Ambassador to Vietnam David Shear (Source: VNA)
Reporter: As a strongest economy in the world and the most important member of APEC, what are the US’s expectations at the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting in Da Nang?
Former Ambassador David Shear: I think the President will be very interested in making speech in Da Nang on American policy in the region and I think one thing that the US expects is the friends and allies in the region and the other like-minded countries will be reassured that the US will remain engaged in the region and that we will continue to be a reliable ally.
Reporter: What are the main goals of the United States during President Donald Trump's visit to Vietnam?
Former Ambassador David Shear: I think one goal would be for the President to explain our regional security and economic policies since we repeal the TPP, it has become very important for the US to explain how we are going to approach international trade in East Asia. We have lots of competition from the Chinese, for example. I think it is important for the US to articulate a coherent trade policy while the President is in Da Nang.
Reporter: What do you think about the bilateral relationship between the United States and Vietnam since President Donald Trump came to power, prospects for cooperation between the two countries in the future, especially in trade and investment?
Former Ambassador David Shear: I think the bilateral relationship between the US and Vietnam is very strong and growing stronger. Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc had a very successful visit to Washington and very useful conversation with the President while he was here at the end of May. We have carried that dialogue forward both in the defense sphere and in the economic sphere as well. So I think we established the bases for very successful visit by President Trump to Hanoi after he participate in the APEC summit in Da Nang.
The US and Vietnam has a very strong bilateral relationship. That relationship is held together by the fact that we have very strong common interests in defense and security relations in the region and economic interests as well. We have a very large and growing bilateral trade relationship. In 2016, bilateral trade stood at about 52 billion USD and that is a very large and important relationship for both Vietnam and the US. I think they will be growing direct investment from the US in Vietnam as well as the investment from Vietnam in the US as the result of flourishing bilateral relationship. I think Vietnam is a good place to invest in.
Reporter: In your opinion, what the two sides will achieve in the coming visit of President Donald Trump to Vietnam?
Former Ambassador David Shear: I think we have a variety of issues on the bilateral agenda. I think the President will probably talk about strengthening defence relations. I think he will also talk about some of the bilateral trade issues that the two sides mentioned in the joint statement issue in connection with the Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc visit here. So I think American administration will be going into the meetings in Hanoi with some expectation that we can result some of the bilateral trade, for instance.
Reporter: Thank you for taking your time with us!