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Feb 08, 2023 / 18:15

Vietnam-Singapore eye digital, green economies

During the three-day visit to Singapore, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong will witness the signing of bilateral agreements that will further strengthen the multifaceted cooperation between Singapore and Vietnam.

Vietnam and Singapore will boost cooperation in the green economy and digitization during a three-day visit paid by Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh from February 8-11 at his Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong's invitation.

  Vietnam's Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and his spouse Le Thi Bich Tran reach Singapore on Feb 8. Photos: Nhat Bac/VGP 

It’s the first visit made by a Vietnamese Prime Minister in the past five years.

Both Prime Ministers will witness the signing of bilateral agreements that will further strengthen the multifaceted cooperation between Singapore and Vietnam, particularly in the digital and green economy, according to Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA).

PM Chinh’s visit comes as the two countries celebrate the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations and the 10th anniversary of strategic partnership this year.

The Vietnamese PM will be accompanied by his wife Le Thi Bich Tran and senior officials namely Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son, Head of the Government’s Office Tran Van Son, Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung, Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien, Head of the Committee for Management of State Capital at Enterprises Nguyen Hoang Anh, and a business delegation.

During the three-day visit, PM Chinh will pay a courtesy call to President Halimah Yacob, meet Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Lawrence Wong, Senior Minister and Coordinating Minister for National Security Teo Chee Hean and Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin.

As part of the visit, PM Chinh will also visit the Smart Nation CityScape exhibition at the Singapore City Gallery.

Vietnam and Singapore have exchanged high-ranking visits over the past years. In 2022, Singaporean Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat visited Vietnam in September and President Halimah Yacob’s visit took place in October. In return, the Vietnamese President visited Singapore in February 2022.

The Vietnamese President’s visit to Singapore in 2022 marked the signing of 29 agreements worth US$11 billion by businesses of both sides.

 The Vietnamese community in Singapore welcomes Prime Minister and his spouse. 

Strong economic ties exist between Vietnam and Singapore, with bilateral trade increasing steadily over the last ten years to reach $31.3 billion in 2022. In terms of investment, Singapore was the second-largest investor in Vietnam as of May 2022, with investments totaling $94.5 billion.

The Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Parks (VSIPs) are a significant element of economic engagement. There are now 12 VSIPs across Vietnam, attracting $17 billion in investments and creating 300,000 jobs.

Technical education is another key area of cooperation. So far, more than 20,900 Vietnamese officials have attended courses on various development sectors under the Singapore Cooperation Program.

Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan described Vietnam and Singapore as “longstanding friends and close partners” that cooperate in many areas, both bilaterally and multilaterally.

According to him, Vietnam is eager to increase the use of digital platforms and services in the nation, much like Singapore’s Smart Nation strategy, which aims to accelerate digitalization throughout the economy, government, and society.

In terms of the green economy, Singapore and Vietnam have both set the same goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. The nations are eager to collaborate on capturing renewable energy.