President Tran Dai Quang (R) receives Kamal Malhotra, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Vietnam (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam will continue to be an active and responsible member of the international community and the United Nations (UN) and engage more in the UN’s peacekeeping operations and prove its role as a member of UN organisations such as the UN Economic and Social Council and the International Law Commission, said President Tran Dai Quang.

While receiving the newly-accredited UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Vietnam, Kamal Malhotra, in Hanoi on April 21, President Quang said Vietnam supports the efforts to reform the UN, including the One UN Initiative, and always actively takes part in the UN’s endeavours to build a peaceful world of sustainable development.

The State leader noted that Vietnam treasures cooperative ties with the UN and considers the UN as one of the leading multilateral partner. He took this occasion to thank the UN for its precious assistance to Vietnam during the process of post-war reconstruction, national construction and development over the last four decades, thus helping the country obtain socio-economic achievements and successfully accomplish the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The year 2017 marks 40 years since Vietnam became a UN member and is also the first year of implementing the Vietnam-UN Joint Strategic Plan for 2017-2021, the President said, adding that this is a good occasion for both sides to review their cooperation over the past years and work out measures to enhance ties in the time ahead.

In the context of growing global challenges in security and development, multilateral forums, especially the UN, play an increasingly important role. Vietnam hopes the UN will continue upholding its role in maintaining international peace and security and supporting countries, including Vietnam, to successfully implement the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, he said.

As one of the countries seriously affected by climate change, Vietnam expects to strengthen cooperation with the UN in response to climate change and successfully implement the Paris Agreement, President Quang said, expressing his gratitude to the UN for inviting Vietnam to pilot an action plan on preparing for and responding to El Nino.

He told his guest that after 30 years of reform, Vietnam has attained numerous socio-economic development achievements and become a middle-income country. However, the country is also facing an array of challenges such as how to maintain stable growth, avoid the middle-income trap, protect the environment, and respond to climate change, and expects continued collaboration from the UN to address thsse challenges, thereby helping to promote peace, security and sustainable development in Vietnam and the region.

The President also asserted that Vietnam will create optimal conditions for UN agencies to operate and expressed his belief that with his experience, Malhotra will actively help to bring Vietnam-UN relations to a new level.

For his part, Malhotra said Vietnam is important to the UN and it is one of the countries taking the lead in carrying out the One UN Initiative and strongly contributing to thes initiative’s success.

He lauded the country’s active and effective participation in and contributions to the UN’s activities, including peacekeeping operations.

The UN is looking forwards to Vietnam’s signing and approval of the Vietnam-UN Joint Strategic Plan for 2017-2021, which is a master plan for about 20 UN organisations in and outside of Vietnam, he noted.

A prioritised issue in the plan is that the UN will support Vietnam to mitigate climate change impacts and the UN has also defined Vietnam as one of the 10 prioritised countries to have an action plan on preparing and responding to El Nino, Malhotra said.

The action plan is a good initiative and also a chance for Vietnam to call for financial aid and investment in responding to climate change, he said, adding that the UN also plans to help the country to increase its economy’s competitiveness in the region and the world.-VNA