Consolidating good friendship with Bangladesh and Bulgaria

At the invitations of Speaker of the Bangladeshi Parliament Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury and President of the National Assembly of Bulgaria Rosen Zhelyazkov, Chairman of Vietnamese National Assembly (NA) Vuong Dinh Hue is paying official visits to Bangladesh and Bulgaria from September 21-26.
NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue. (Photo: VNA)
NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue. (Photo: VNA)

The visits are taking place in the context that the traditional friendships between Vietnam and Bangladesh and Bulgaria are developing well. This is the first visit of the Vietnamese NA to Bangladesh and marks the highest leader of Vietnam to visit Bangladesh since 2018. For Bulgaria, this is the first visit of the Vietnamese NA in 15 years.

Since the establishment of diplomatic relations on February 11, 1973, the long-standing friendship between Vietnam and Bangladesh has been persistently nurtured by generations of leaders and the people of the two countries, reaping numerous achievements. High-level delegation exchange activities have been maintained quite regularly. Regarding Party relations, the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) established official relations with the Communist Party of Bangladesh and the Workers Party of Bangladesh. Along with the relationship with the two Parties of Bangladesh, the relations between the CPV and the ruling People's Alliance Party (AL) have recorded a new development.

The good relationship between the Vietnamese NA and Bangladesh Parliament has been developing strongly. Since her official visit to Vietnam in 2017, the Speaker of the Bangladeshi Parliament has always given special affection to the land and people of Vietnam, and has highly appreciated the legislative role of the Vietnamese NA as well as the cooperation between the parliaments of the two countries at regional and international parliamentary forums.

Regarding economics, the trade turnover between the two countries increased rapidly during the 2010-2014 period (from 288 million USD to nearly 800 million USD) and maintained a positive level in recent years (1.465 billion USD in 2022 and 555 million USD in the first six months of 2023). Bangladesh currently has 18 investment projects in Vietnam, ranking 101st among countries and territories investing in Vietnam.

Not only have they maintained good bilateral relations, the two countries have also regularly exchanged and cooperated closely at regional and international forums. Vietnam and Bangladesh have often share similar views, especially on issues such as human rights, gender equality, and sustainable development. The two countries have also supported each other's candidacies for United Nations (UN) agencies and were both elected to the UN Human Rights Council for the 2023-2025 tenure.

The official visit to Bangladesh by NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue takes place when the two countries celebrate the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic ties. This is an important milestone for Vietnam and Bangladesh to look back on the cooperation achievements in recent years as well as look towards the future, tightening the bond between the two nations. NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue’s visit contributes to consolidating and expanding the friendship and effective and practical cooperation between the two countries in all fields, while affirming the commitment of the Vietnamese NA to attach importance to cooperation with the Bangladesh Parliament.

The next destination during NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue’s business trip is Bulgaria, a European country with geographical distance but close ties with Vietnam. President Ho Chi Minh's official friendly visit to Bulgaria in August 1957 laid the foundation and was an important milestone in the history of relations between the two countries. During the difficult and arduous years of the struggle for national independence and construction, the Vietnamese people always received valuable material and spiritual assistance from Bulgarian friends. With solid friendship as the foundation, the Vietnam-Bulgaria relationship has developed positively in recent years, especially in the fields of politics and diplomacy. The two sides have exchanged many high-level delegations. In 2012, the parliaments of both sides signed a Memorandum of Cooperation.

Vietnam and Bulgaria have cooperated closely at multilateral forums. Bulgaria supported Vietnam's accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), its candidacy for non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the 2008-2009 and 2020-2021 tenures, as well as candidacy for the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) during the 2016-2018 tenure and the UN Human Rights Council for the 2014-2016 and 2023-2025 tenures. The Vietnamese and Bulgarian National Assemblies have also maintained meetings, coordination, and support for each other at multilateral parliamentary forums.

Based on the good cooperation, the official visit to Bulgaria by NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue aims to further consolidate and strengthen the long-standing friendship and multifaceted cooperation in general and parliamentary cooperation in particular between Vietnam and Bulgaria. The visit also contributes to promoting the effective implementation of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) as well as the Bulgarian National Assembly’s ratification of the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA).

With the tireless efforts of generations of leaders and people, the traditional friendship and multi-faceted cooperation between Vietnam and Bangladesh and Bulgaria continues to develop positively, promising to reach a new height. The official visits by NA Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue to Bangladesh and Bulgaria once again affirmed Vietnam's determination to strengthen cooperation and open a new and more beautiful chapter on the journey of developing the relations between Vietnam and Bangladesh and Bulgaria.