S.Korea National Assembly Speaker starts official visit to Vietnam
South Korea is Vietnam’s largest foreign investor, second largest ODA donor and second biggest trading partner.
Speaker of South Korea’s National Assembly Park Byeong-seug and his spouse have arrived in Vietnam for an official visit from October 31 to November 4.
|Speaker of South Korea’s National Assembly Park Byeong-seug. Photo: hnbnnews.co.kr|
The visit is made at the invitation of Chairwoman of the National Assembly (NA) Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, according to a statement of the NA’s Committee for External Relations.
Mr. Park Byeong-seug is among few foreign high-ranking official to visit Vietnam this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Before him, South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung Wha came to Hanoi for an official visit on September 17-18.
This is Mr. Park Byeong-seug’s first visit to Vietnam in the capacity of Speaker of South Korea’s NA, three years after his predecessor Chung Sye-kyun’s in 2017.
NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said earlier this year that cooperation between Vietnamese and South Korean National Assemblies has been thriving and can be considered a model of parliamentary ties.
The two countries upgraded their bilateral relations to a strategic cooperative partnership in 2009. Since then, their ties have developed comprehensively and pragmatically on the basis of political trust between the two countries’ high-ranking leaders, similarities in history and culture, mutual economic assistance, and people-to-people exchange.
Economic cooperation is one of the highlights in bilateral relations. South Korea is Vietnam’s largest foreign investor, second largest ODA donor and second biggest trading partner. The two sides are striving to raise two-way trade to US$100 billion soon from US$70.3 billion in 2019.
South Korean companies contribute some 30% of Vietnam’s export turnover annually. Particularly, Samsung makes up around one fifth of Vietnam’s exports.
In addition, Korea is Vietnam’s second largest tourist source. In 2019, some 4.2 million South Koreans came to Vietnam while nearly 800,000 Vietnamese people visited the kimchi land. Before the Covid-19 breakout, there were nearly 2,000 flights between the two countries.
Vietnam is now home to over 160,000 Korean expats, mostly businesspeople, while some 200,000 Vietnamese are living in South Korea.
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