10:18 | 08/02/2016 Cooperation
(VEN) - French Ambassador to Vietnam Jean-Noel Poirier has experienced seven Lunar New Year (Tet) holidays with impressive memories on the country’s traditional culture and peaceful beauty. He talked about economic relations between the two countries and Tet in an interview with Vietnam Economic News’ Nguyen Phuong.
How do you assess economic relations between the two countries?
Economic cooperation between France and Vietnam has recorded dynamic development. French exports to Vietnam increased by more than 20 percent in 2015 (excluding the purchase of Airbus planes). If its deal was included, this figure would reach around 80 percent. Meanwhile, Vietnamese exports to France also recorded growth of around 20 percent.
However investment was not satisfactory. Although some of them added more capital, new investment projects remained missing.
Have French companies paid attention to energy?
French companies have paid special attention to Vietnam’s energy sector. France has many leading energy companies such as EDF and GDF Suez that are promoting cooperation with Vietnamese partners. We expect that this cooperation will achieve positive results this year. In addition, Areva has enhanced cooperation with Japan’s Mitsubishi to introduce a reactor with latest technology for the second nuclear power plant in Vietnam. However this project will take a long time to be implemented.
France has not organized large-scale trade events for a while. Does the country intend to organize any events this year?
Small French companies operating in veterinary treatment, frozen beef and fruit maintenance and water technology have visited Vietnam to research the market in the past two years. With such knowledge about a specific field, it’s easy to introduce French companies to local partners. We continue to implement our trade promotion strategy in 2016 with the introduction of some companies in agriculture, airport management, cosmetics, sustainable city building and tourism to Vietnam.
There are two kettledrums and a statue of Buddha in your room. How have you come to learn about Vietnamese culture?
In the 80s, I paid special attention to Vietnam and participated in cultural events during Tet organized by the Vietnamese Embassy in France. In my first visit to Vietnam in 1989, I was really impressed about historical monuments in Hue. In addition, classes in terms of the Vietnamese culture at the Paris Diderot University left many unforgettable memories for me.
The kettledrum is seen as an outstanding object of the Vietnamese culture. Therefore, placing the two kettledrums in my room is meaningful.
What is your impression about Tet?
I have experienced seven Tets in Vietnam, including four in Ho Chi Minh City and three in Hanoi. The most impressive moment during Tet is the peaceful beauty of Hanoi in the first two days of a lunar new year. Tet is seen as an opportunity to connect cultural traditions and honor family values.