Ceremony marks 25 years of cooperation between Vietnam and Switzerland (Photo: http://dangcongsan.vn)
Hanoi ​(VNA) – Switzerland will push ahead economic partnership with Vietnam to help the Southeast Asian country achieve sustainable economic growth.

Swiss Ambassador to Vietnam Beatrice Maser Mallor was speaking at a workshop held in Hanoi on September 30 to celebrate 25 years of cooperation between the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and Vietnam .

The economic cooperation programme will be carried out by the Swiss State Secretariat of Economic Affairs (SECO), she said, adding that the bilateral economic cooperation strategy for 2017-2020 will be announced soon.

She noted that the SDC has provided Vietnam with a non-refundable aid package of 216 million SHC (222.37 million USD) from 1992 to 2016 to carry out 32 projects.

Switzerland pledges to continue providing development aid for Vietnam so that the country will still enjoy benefits from regional and global programmes of the SDC to address such challenges as climate change, water and food security.

Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen The Phuong said the cooperation between Vietnam and Switzerland is expanding from education, vocational training, and administrative reform to urban development planning, agricultural livelihood assistance, forestry and environmental protection.

The SDC began bilateral cooperation programmes in Vietnam in 1992 with the overall target of poverty reduction. The agency has provided technical and financial support for Vietnam to improve sustainable forest management and local living standards.

It was one of the first development partners in Vietnam to propose tackling poverty problems in urban areas between 2000 and 2007.

From mid-2000, the Swiss agency focused on projects in the northern mountainous region of Vietnam , where a majority of poor ethnic minority people were living.

It also helped Vietnam establish one-stop-shop public administrative centers in 103 districts in nine disadvantaged provinces as well as enable local women to enjoy better income.-VNA