The ambassador, in an interview granted to Vietnam News Agency on 50 years of diplomacy between Vietnam and Canada, noted that both countries have maintained regular visit exchanges and contacts to outline orientation for bilateral cooperation.
Trade and investment cooperation is given top priority in bilateral relations. Vietnam is Canada’s largest trading partner in ASEAN, while Canada is Vietnam’s second largest trading partner, after the US, in the Americas.
Two-way trade turnover always records two-digit growth per year, reaching US$7 billion in 2022.
By the end of 2022, Canada ranked 14th out of 130 countries and territories investing in Vietnam, with nearly 250 projects worth approx. US$5 billion. Meanwhile, Vietnamese investment in Canada hit US$150 million, accounting for 47.5% of its total investment capital abroad.
In order to promote bilateral economic and trade cooperation, the two countries have established a Joint Committee on Economy Cooperation in 2022.
Defense and security cooperation has also been enhanced, following the hosting of the annual Defense Policy Strategic Dialogue Mechanism and the active implementation of the Defense Cooperation Plan for the 2021-2023 period.
Education cooperation is also another bright spot. Currently, there are about 21,000 Vietnamese students studying in Canada, ranking third among the countries with the most international students in the country.
In addition, cooperation in tourism and people-to-people exchanges have been strengthened. Vietnamese localities have also maintained cooperation with their Canadian counterparts to garner Canadian support in developing mountainous localities.
With regard to development cooperation, since 1990, Canada has always been among the leading countries in development aid to Vietnam with a total value of about CAD2 billion.
The two countries share common views on regional and international issues of mutual concern. They vow to build a peaceful, stable and developed Asia-Pacific region based on the observance of principles of international law, such as the United Nations Charter and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). They also voice strong support for building order, rules and regulations in the waters, including the East Sea.
Canada has recently sought to increase economic engagement in the region by adopting its Indo-Pacific Strategy in November 2022. The strategy highlights its commitment to promoting free trade and investment, supporting small and medium-sized enterprises and enhancing economic cooperation.
This September, Canada is scheduled to upgrade its relationship with ASEAN to a strategic partnership – a move that is expected to promote cooperation between Canada and ASEAN, as well as between Canada and Vietnam.
According to the ambassador, Canada is a member of the Group of seven industrialised nations (G7) and the 14th largest economy in the world. Vietnam therefore can take advantage of Canada’s strengths in advanced technology and science to support the country’s process of national industrialization and modernization and in developing infrastructure facilities, green economy, clean energy, and energy conversion, as well as responding to climate change.
Furthermore, the ambassador said the Vietnamese community in Canada now numbering approximately 300,000 serves to increase bilateral cooperation, especially in the fields of education, people-to-people exchanges, and development cooperation.
To mark the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Vietnam and Canada this year, ambassador Vinh said the Vietnamese Embassy in Canada and the Canadian Embassy in Vietnam will host a diverse range of activities, including Vietnamese Cultural Days in Canada, trade and economic seminars, and trade and tourism promotions in both countries.