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Nov 13, 2022 / 17:47

Olaf Scholz arrives in Hanoi, 1st German Chancellor trip to Vietnam in a decade

Scholz is accompanied on his visit to Vietnam by a twelve-strong business delegation.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has landed in Hanoi to begin a two-day visit to Vietnam, the first by a German chancellor after 11 years.

 German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (L) at Noi Bai International Airport, Hanoi on Sunday. Photo: VNA

Vietnam is the first stop on the Chancellor's trip to Southeast Asia, during which he will visit Singapore and participate in the G20 Summit of major economic powers in Indonesia.

The focus of the visit, made at the invitation of Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh, is to discuss the Strategic Partnership between Vietnam and Germany, which has existed since 2011.

The visit offers the opportunity to revitalize and deepen the partnership. In addition to the diversification of economic relations and cooperation on climate response and energy, there will also be major political issues.

Olaf Scholz is accompanied by Secretary of State and Federal Government Spokesman Steffen Hebestreit; Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action Franziska Brantner; German Ambassador to Vietnam Guido Hildner; the Chancellor’s Foreign Policy and National Security Advisor Jens Ploetner; the Chancellor’s Economic Policy Advisor Steffen Meyer, among others.

The German Chancellor is scheduled to meet with PM Chinh during the trip, engage in a press conference, pay a courtesy call on Nguyen Phu Trong, general secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV), and attend a roundtable discussion with Vietnamese and German businesses.

Vietnam is the third Asian country after Japan and China that Scholz paid an official visit to since he took office in December 2021, demonstrating the growing importance of Vietnam, Germany’s most important trading partner in Southeast Asia.

With nearly 100 million people, Vietnam is one of the world's fastest-growing economies, as it is a member of more than a dozen regional and bilateral free trade agreements. Bilateral trade has seen growth following the entry into force of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement in August 2020, and an investment protection agreement is in the process of ratification.