President Tran Dai Quang and his spouse are welcomed at Beijing Capital International Airport by Chinese officials (Photo: VNA)

Beijing (VNA) – President Tran Dai Quang and his spouse set foot in Beijing at 12 noon on May 11 (local time), beginning a State visit to China until May 15 during which he will also attend the high-level forum on the Belt and Road Initiative.

The Vietnamese leader was met at Beijing Capital International Airport by Chinese Minister of Culture Luo Shugang, Chinese Ambassador to Vietnam Hong Xiaoyong, and Vietnamese Ambassador to China Dang Minh Khoi, among others.

The State visit is made at the invitation of Party General Secretary and President of China Xi Jinping amidst growing relations in various spheres between the two countries.

Senior leaders of the two Parties and countries have maintained regular meetings and reached an important common agreement on the continuation of developing the Vietnam-China comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership in a stable and healthy manner.

Cooperation between the two sides’ ministries, sectors and localities have been strengthened while economic, trade, investment and tourism partnerships are being expanded.

In 2016, bilateral trade approximated 72 billion USD, up 7.9 percent from the previous year. China continued to be the biggest trade partner of Vietnam, which in turn is the largest ASEAN trade partner of China.

By the end of March 2017, China had invested in more than 1,600 projects worth over 11 billion USD in Vietnam, ranking eighth among 116 countries and territories investing in the Southeast Asian nation.

About 2.7 million Chinese visitors came to Vietnam in 2016, soaring 51 percent from a year earlier, making China the top source of foreign tourists to Vietnam. Meanwhile, Vietnam also had the biggest number of tourists to China, 2.2 million, compared to other ASEAN countries.-VNA