Vietnam’s external relations

Independence, self-reliance, diversification

06:00 | 27/12/2021 Economy

(VEN) - Despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Vietnam conducted energetic and affective bilateral and multilateral diplomacy and economic cooperation in 2021, as reflected in a series of top-level visits to neighboring countries, traditional friends and key partners.

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Cuban Prime Minister Manuel Marrero Cruz and Vietnamese President Nguyen Xuan Phuc
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French President Emmanuel Macron and Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh

Deepening bilateral relations

The 13th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam held in late January set out requirements for comprehensive and extensive international integration. This was implemented in a series of top-level foreign visits by President Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue to countries, such as Laos, Switzerland, Russia, Cuba, France, the UK, India, the Republic of Korea and Japan.

The visits confirmed Vietnam’s foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, diversification and multilateralization of external relations.

President Nguyen Xuan Phuc conducted an official visit to Laos in August, the first official visit to a foreign country by a senior party and state leader after the 13th National Party Congress and the first trip abroad by the state leader since he took office in April, reflecting the highest priority to consolidating and developing the friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between Vietnam and Laos. President Phuc also paid the visits to Cuba, Switzerland and Russia, opening up cooperation prospects between Vietnam and its partners.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh paid a working visit to the UK and an official visit to France. During the visits, PM Chinh had more than 20 bilateral meetings with leaders of countries and international organizations, affirming Vietnam’s desire and determination to further deepen bilateral relations with its partners. In addition, PM Chinh’s visit to Japan was significant in strengthening and consolidating the extensive strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan.

National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue’s trip to Europe contributed to consolidating and strengthening Vietnam’s foreign relations and promoting cooperation with the EU and member states.

The visits by top-level Vietnamese leaders succeeded beyond expectations, as clearly reflected in a series of joint statements, documents and cooperation agreements.

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Vietnamese National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue holds talks with European Parliament President David Sassoli

Boosting multilateral diplomacy

The 13th National Party Congress also stressed the need to further elevate the role of multilateral diplomacy and to actively contribute to the building and shaping of multilateral institutions for the benefit of the nation and people and the common interests of the international community.

In 2021, President Nguyen Xuan Phuc addressed the opening session of the United Nations General Assembly’s 76th session (UNGA 76). President Phuc delivered a speech that drew praise from international friends, saying that it conveyed a strong message about a dynamic, innovative, thriving and peace-loving Vietnam that makes practical, responsible and effective contributions to the work of the United Nations. On the sidelines of the UNGA, President Phuc had meetings with senior leaders of countries and international organizations, discussing practical measures to promote and develop relations in an effective manner.

During his business trip to Switzerland, President Phuc also had a series of working sessions with leaders of the United Nations Office in Geneva, the World Health Organization (WHO), the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). This was the first time the state leader visited and worked with these important international organizations in Geneva. In 2021, Vietnam fulfilled its duties as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and implemented multilateral diplomatic activities in the spirit of the 13th National Party Congress.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh attended the opening ceremony of the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in November, demonstrating the Vietnamese government’s determination to realize international commitments to climate change response.

The important results were attributed to the close direction and direct participation of party and state leaders and the persistent policy of independence, self-reliance, diversification and multilateralization of external relations, putting the interests of the nation first.

Thu Phuong