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Apr 01, 2022 / 19:43

Vietnam, Germany urged to boost bilateral, multilateral political cooperation

Economic ties are a highlight in the bilateral relations as Germany is Vietnam’s largest trading partner in Europe while Vietnam is Germany’s biggest trading partner in ASEAN.

Vietnam and Germany are expected to boost political cooperation bilaterally and in multilateral forums, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in a telephone talk with Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Nguyen Phu Trong.

Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Nguyen Phu Trong and Vietnamese high-ranking officials at the phone talk with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Mar 31. Photo: VNA   

Measures for enhanced multi-sectoral relations were also dealt with in the telephone conversation by Olaf Scholz who is also the leader of the Social Democratic Party (SPD).

The two spoke, among other things, about the deepening of the bilateral partnership and economic relations as well as about the armed conflict in Ukraine. Regarding the armed conflict in Ukraine, Trong affirmed Vietnam’s consistent policy of respecting the basic principles of the United Nations, including respect for the independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of states, and the peaceful settlement of disputes. He hopes that relevant parties will promote dialogue to end conflicts and restore peace based on respecting the legitimate interests of the parties and international law.

Strengthening economic ties is the main topic of the conversation with a focus on cooperation on climate protection and energy, the fight against Covid-19, expanding German investment in Vietnam, and efforts to tap the potential of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).

Olaf Scholz said his government is working to maintain Germany’s position as a leading economy and talked about his country’s net-zero plan by 2045, saying it’s the field of potential cooperation for Vietnam to get German expertise in the country’s low-carbon journey.

Other topics included cooperation on science-technology, education, defense-security, digital transformation, education-vocational training as well as international issues.

 Vietnam and Germany flags were raised in Hanoi. Photo: Linh Pham

Currently, Germany is Vietnam’s most important trading partner in Europe with two-way trade at EUR13.3 billion (US$14.7 billion) in 2021 while Vietnam is Germany’s largest trading partner within ASEAN.

Vietnam and Germany have strong multi-sectoral relations. Since 2011, Germany and Vietnam have elevated their relations to “strategic partnership” involving cooperation projects at all levels and in numerous policy fields. Relations are shaped by many different inter-societal contacts. Germany and Vietnam regard themselves as partners in endeavors to uphold the rules-based order, respect for international law, multilateralism, global free trade and investment, and environmental and climate protection, according to the German Foreign Ministry.

Development cooperation focusing on implementing the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Climate Agreement is another important element in bilateral relations. The German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development’s 2030 reform strategy defines Vietnam as a global partner country, with a focus on key issues based on the country’s green growth strategy: climate adaptation and energy, environmental protection, healthcare, and societal cooperation.

Bilateral cultural relations are thriving. Many cultural, academic, and scientific institutions, including the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the Goethe-Institut, the Vietnamese-German University, the Federal Office of Administration – Central Agency for Schools Abroad (ZfA), and the International German School) are active in Vietnam.

In addition, the community of more than 100,000 Vietnamese who have worked or studied in Germany forms a unique bridge between the two countries, sustaining and increasing mutual interest.

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