This is the first time that President Nguyen Xuan Phuc has visited the RoK as the Vietnamese head of state, the first RoK visit by a Vietnamese President in 11 years and the first visit by a Vietnamese high-ranking leader to the RoK since the country had a new president.
Vietnam and the RoK established diplomatic ties on December 22, 1992. The two countries issued a joint statement on the Vietnam-RoK comprehensive partnership in August 2001 and upgraded their ties to a strategic partnership in October 2009.
After 30 years of diplomatic ties, the Vietnam-RoK relationship is now in a stage of fine development. Vietnam always treasures and wishes to enhance the strategic partnership between the two countries. The RoK regards Vietnam as a key partner in implementing its foreign policy in Southeast Asia and its Indo-Pacific strategy.
The Vietnam-RoK cooperation has seen many great strides and recorded many important, substantive and effective results in various fields. Delegation exchanges and high-level meetings are maintained. Bilateral mechanisms such as the Inter-governmental Committee on Economic, Scientific and Technological Cooperation, the Joint Ministerial Committee on cooperation in nuclear power, energy and industry, the Deputy Prime Ministerial Economic Dialogue and the strategic dialogue on diplomacy, security and defence at the deputy minister level, are all enhanced.
Vietnam and the RoK work closely with each other at multilateral forums, such as the United Nations, ASEAN, APEC and in regional and international issues of shared concern, such as the East Sea/South China Sea and Korean peninsula issues.
The RoK is currently the largest foreign direct investor in Vietnam, the second largest ODA donor for Vietnam and Vietnam’s third largest trading partner. The two countries actively and effectively implement the Vietnam-Korea Free Trade Agreement (VKFTA) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), while maintaining stable growth in bilateral trade, aiming to reach 100 billion USD in 2023 and 150 billion by 2030.
Cooperation in labour, education, agriculture, science-technology and tourism has all seen positive progress. Vietnam is the second largest source of foreign workers in the RoK, while the RoK is the second largest recipient of Vietnamese workers. The RoK is also a key tourist market in Vietnam. The two countries have signed many cooperation documents in education, science-technology, culture, arts, sports and tourism, and frequently held people-to-people exchanges, helping to enhance understanding and trust between the two countries.
The fine cooperation results over the past 30 years are the solid foundation for Vietnam and the RoK to work towards elevating the strategic partnership between the two countries. President Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit is an important occasion for the leaders to discuss and agree on a new framework for the bilateral relationship, and outline major orientations for strategic and comprehensive cooperation. The two sides will also share their views and discuss regional and international situations, thereby enhancing coordination at multilateral forums for the benefit of each country, for peace, stability and prosperity in the region and the world at large.
President Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to the RoK continues to affirm and implement the 13th Party Congress’s foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, peace, cooperation and development; diversification and multilateralistion of external relations and deepening partnerships. In welcoming President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and the Vietnamese high-ranking delegation, the RoK demonstrates the importance attached to the bilateral relationship and the wish to take the bilateral relationship to a new stage of development.
May President Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s state visit to the RoK be a great success, making bilateral cooperation continue to grow substantively and effectively, helping to create a new stature for the strategic partnership between Vietnam and the RoK.