Royal Japanese visit solidifies Vietnam ties

13:42 | 27/03/2017 Cooperation

(VEN) - Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko paid an official visit to Vietnam from February 28 to March 5 at the invitation of Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang. This political event marked a significant milestone in the friendship and cooperation between the two countries.  

Japan has invested in more than 3,000 projects in Vietnam

Vietnam and Japan established diplomatic relations in 1973. Over the last 44 years, they have promoted cooperation in a wide range of fields including economics, politics, diplomacy, security, national defense, agriculture and human resource development, in a spirit of mutual understanding and respect, and for mutual benefits. The two sides have maintained the exchange of high-level visits to strengthen mutual political trust.

On the occasion of Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s visit to Japan in 2006, the two countries agreed to build a strategic partnership. In 2009, Vietnam Communist Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh visited Japan and the two sides upgraded bilateral relations to a strategic partnership for peace and prosperity in Asia. In 2014, on the occasion of Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang’s visit to Japan, the two sides agreed to deepen and broaden the strategic partnership.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Vietnam in January 2017 and the two countries agreed to develop the bilateral strategic partnership in a more comprehensive and effective manner.

Thanks to diplomatic efforts, bilateral relations have expanded. Japan has become one of Vietnam’s leading economic partners and was the first G-7 nation to recognize Vietnam’s market economy status in October 2011. It is also a major provider of official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnam, accounting for more than 30 percent of total ODA for Vietnam so far. Japan ranks third among Vietnam’s tourism partners, with nearly 750,000 tourists visiting Vietnam in 2016.

Japan currently is Vietnam’s fourth largest trading partner. According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, bilateral trade in goods has grown an average 13.9 percent annually over the past decade, from US$9.93 billion in 2006 to about US$29.7 billion in 2016, and is expected to reach US$60 billion by 2020.

Japan ranks second among 116 countries and territories investing in Vietnam. By the end of February 2017, Japan had invested in 3,336 projects with total registered capital of more than US$42.49 billion, accounting for over 14 percent of all foreign direct investment in the country. More than 1,600 Japanese businesses, including large groups, have invested in Vietnam. The two countries have carried out large-scale cooperation projects in infrastructure and energy.

Bilateral cooperation in other fields, such as science and technology, education and training, culture, sports, tourism and environment have also expanded. Vietnam and Japan have maintained tight cooperation at multilateral forums such as the United Nations Human Rights Council, ASEAN, APEC and ASEM.

Nguyen Hoa & Kim Chi