Vietnam looks to deepen traditional ties with Middle East, African countries

Monday, 2019-09-09 12:24:19
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A general view of the conference. (Photo:
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NDO – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is holding a conference “Meeting with ambassadors of the Middle East and African countries” in Hanoi on September 9-10, in an effort to strengthen connections and further promote the role of the nations’ diplomatic representative agencies in Vietnam.

The two-day event offers a platform for direct dialogue and exchange between the diplomatic representative bodies and Vietnam’s ministries, sectors, localities and businesses concerning specific measures to accelerate multifaceted cooperation between the sides.

The meeting is attended by heads of resident and non-resident diplomatic representative agencies and honourary consuls of the Middle East and African countries in Vietnam; representatives from a number of development partners and international organisations, including the United Nations, the World Bank, the European Union, the International Francophone Organisation and the Japan International Cooperation Agency; representatives of Vietnam’s ministries, sectors and localities; together with domestic and foreign enterprises.

Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Quoc Cuong speaks at the conference. (Photo:

The conference focuses on discussing some key contents, such as Vietnam’s socio-economic situation and some major orientations in the country’s foreign policy in the time ahead, especially Vietnam’s priorities as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for 2020-2021. The two-day event also reviews cooperation between Vietnam and the Middle East and African regions, including the collaboration between Vietnam’s ministries and sectors and the diplomatic missions of regional countries.

Specifically, participants will talk measures to strengthen goods imports and exports between the two sides, new modes of bilateral agricultural cooperation, and the possibility of further expanding telecommunication ties between Vietnam and the region.

In particular, delegates will join in discussions and meaningful field trips at the Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Sciences (under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), a leading unit in agricultural and fishery sciences with abundant experience in cooperating with Africa.

Delegates at the conference. (Photo:

As a reliable and responsible partner of the Middle East and African countries, Vietnam always attaches importance to its traditional friendly relations and cooperation with other countries in the region. To date, Vietnam has established diplomatic ties with 69 of the 70 Middle East and African countries, while fostering trade relations with all the regional nations with two-way trade reaching over US$17.5 billion in 2018, an increase of 300% compared to the previous decade. Vietnam has invested more than US$2.6 billion in the region and received over US$7 billion in direct investment from the regional countries. In addition, under the support of a number of developed countries and international organisations, Vietnam has successfully implemented many models of bilateral, tripartite and quadripartite cooperation with African countries. Telecommunications and labour are among the bright spots in bilateral cooperation, winning recognition and high appreciation from the public opinion of both sides.

Further deepening the traditional friendly relations and cooperation with the Middle East and African countries has always been one of the priorities in Vietnam’s foreign policy. In that spirit, Vietnam highly appreciates the significant role and contributions made by the system of resident and non-resident diplomatic representative agencies of the nations’ in Vietnam, development partners and international organisations to the aforementioned achievements.