He thanked the Australian Government and people for donating over 22 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to Vietnam, and the Australian Department of Defence for providing medical supplies worth 1.5 million AUD (1 million USD) for its Vietnamese counterpart to support the pandemic fight.
The host official also appreciated Australia’s assistance for Vietnam’s UN peacekeeping force, especially in the transportation of level-2 field hospitals to the mission in South Sudan.
Such flights not only helped Vietnam deploy its forces swiftly and safely but also contributed to the bilateral strategic partnership, he said, adding that Vietnam hopes to continue receiving Australia’s support in this regard.
Despite the pandemic’s impacts, defence cooperation has still been carried out as planned, reflected in the maintenance of high-level contact through phone talks between the two defence ministers, a virtual defence policy dialogue at deputy minister level, and the promotion of ties in personnel training, UN peacekeeping, and settlement of the war aftermath, according to Giang.
For the time to come, he noted, apart from effectively maintaining the existing cooperation activities, the two defence ministries should consider expanding their connections to potential fields such as cybersecurity, military trade, defence study, humanitarian aid and disaster relief.
Vietnam and Australia will mark the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic ties in 2023, and the minister expressed his hope that they will carry out many meaningful cooperation activities to celebrate this important milestone.
He also said he believes Mudie will reap successes in her coming positions and always support the countries’ strategic partnership, including defence ties, for peace, stability and development in the region and the world at large.
For her part, the Australian diplomat affirmed that in her new post, she will continue to help foster the countries’ relations, including in defence and UN peacekeeping-related activities.