The Hanoitimes - On the occasion of Mexican Independence Day on September 16, the Ambassador of Mexico Sara Valdés Bolaño reflects on her country’s history and on relations with Vietnam.
This article is dedicated to the victims of the earthquake that hit southern Mexico on September 7. As we say, Mexico is much greater than its problems, and all efforts are being made by our society and authorities to restore the livelihoods of those affected by this natural disaster.
"Vietnamese Pho Day" was held in Mexico.
On the 207th anniversary of our independence, the world’s 15th-largest economy remains fully committed to rules-based free trade, not for trade’s sake, but rather as a means for sustainable and inclusive development. Mexico remains a top FDI destination worldwide, with US$26.7 billion in 2016. It ranks second in economic openness among G20 countries.
This year also marks the 42nd anniversary of diplomatic relations between Mexico and Vietnam. During more than four decades, we have built a relationship based on mutual respect and friendship, as well as shared striving for international peace and security. Strong similarities and common interests are the settings for closer links in the upcoming years.
Mexico is Vietnam’s third-largest trading partner in Latin America while Vietnam is the eighth-largest for Mexico in Asia. Last year, bilateral trade reached over $5 billion, a 30 percent increase compared to 2015. Both countries are top manufacturing destinations thanks to our young and skilled workforce. We must aim to increase ties through participation in global value chains, complementing each other. As Vietnam remains one of the world’s fastest-growing economies, bilateral trade and investment opportunities are expected to thrive in the future.
Mexico and Vietnam will continue to work jointly in favour of open markets and free trade. At multilateral fora we are committed to advancing sustainable and inclusive socioeconomic development as well as trade and investment liberalisation as the best means to improve the wellbeing of our peoples. As members of the World Trade Organisation, both countries understand the importance of ensuring a rules-based, transparent, non-discriminatory multilateral trading system.
Mexico will continue to support Vietnam as host of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum (APEC) in advancing deeper regional integration; promoting sustainable, innovative and inclusive growth; strengthening the competitiveness of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSME); and supporting technical and economic cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region. The participation of President Enrique Peña Nieto at the APEC Leaders and Business Summit in Đà Nẵng in November will reaffirm the cooperative and positive nature of the relationship between our countries.
The potential for bilateral cooperation is also enhanced thanks to the subscription of legal instruments on geographical indications and between state news agencies during the last year. Meanwhile, the relevant authorities began negotiations on a bilateral agreement to avoid double taxation.
People to people exchanges ensure mutual understanding and maintain friendly relations between our countries. Every year, more Vietnamese and Mexican tourists fall in love with each other’s natural and cultural heritage, traditions, and history. Last year, Mexico received a record 35 million tourists (making it the eighth most popular tourist destination worldwide). Nearly 4,000 of them were Vietnamese; while 9,465 Mexicans visited Vietnam.
In the educational and cultural fields, there is ample room to increase the number of young people studying abroad between our countries. I would like to encourage more Vietnamese graduates to apply for Mexican government merit grants for international students to study at Mexican institutions.
I remain convinced that Mexico and Vietnam’s enduring friendship and shared commitment to promote peace and prosperity for our peoples and for the world will continue to uphold joint efforts in raising our relationship to new heights in the coming years.
Tuyet Nhung - VNS