Strengthening international co-operation is one of the ways to develop the study of mathematics in countries like Vietnam , experts have said.

At a three-day international conference on mathematics and applications that began
on Dec. 20 in HCM City , Professor Le Tuan Hoa, chairman of the Vietnam Mathematical Society (VMS), said that mathematics is finding increasing application in many fields including natural sciences, technology, social sciences and economics.

"So it is important to develop mathematics, but this task is not easy for countries in the region, including Vietnam ," Hoa said.

In general, Vietnam has not yet seen many achievements in the field of mathematics and its applications are weak, he said, adding that Vietnam has been carrying out many programmes and strengthening international cooperation to develop mathematics by 2020.

VMS will try to work with math societies in the region and organise many workshops that will invite foreign experts to cooperate in helping develop the discipline in the country, he said.

In the short-run, it will invite Vietnamese math professors who work at institutes in other countries like Ngo Bao Chau and Vu Ha Van to train domestic scientists.

Professor Efim Zelmanov, who was awarded a Fields Medal (analogues of the Nobel Prize in mathematics) in 1994, said at the conference that Vietnam has a few famous mathematic professors teaching in universities and institutes in western countries.

International mathematics societies have been watching the development of Vietnam 's mathematics, he said.

The conference attracted more than 100 domestic and foreign scientists who presented papers on nearly 70 topics relating to mathematics and its application./.