In an interview with the Vietnam News Agency on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the countries’ diplomatic relations, Thayer added that trade and investment have also been a motivating force for the ties. Vietnam and Australia participate in many economic cooperation frameworks, including the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
He said the bilateral relationship has geo-strategic convergence. It is based on many different pillars, but trade and investment have always been among the top priorities, noted the expert.
The nations are recovering from COVID and opportunities are there with economic interests, Thayer said, believing that the two can work together to address the new post-COVID issues at a time when the world is settling down. Trying to move in a different direction of multipolarity suits both, he added.
Commenting on the future and prospects of the ties, he said what they have achieved together is impressive, but there is still room for further development. Vietnam and Australia need to improve and strengthen their people-to-people exchange, as well as their relations in such fields as education, tourism, sports, and climate change response.
The professor is optimistic that the leaders of the two countries will continue to promote and elevate bilateral relations to a new height. He recommended they focus on a number of other sectors, including digital economy, energy transition, decarbonisation, education and training, and public health.
According to him, Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong visited Vietnam and more high-level visits have been made, showing very bright prospects for the bilateral relations.
Thayer said that the two sides will set new priorities for joint works, strengthen some existing ones, and discuss cooperation mechanisms and high-level talks to facilitate bilateral collaboration programmes.