Overview of the forum (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – National reform and sustainable development in East Asia was the main topic of a forum jointly held in Hanoi on March 24 by the Development Strategy Institute under the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and the Forum Oh-rae of the Republic of Korea (RoK).

Addressing the event, MPI Deputy Minister Dang Huy Dong said that the forum opens up new prospects of cooperation between Vietnam and the RoK, while contributing to the enhancement of connection between their scholars, policymakers and businesspeople.

Recommendations given at the event will serve as references for the ministry in working out strategies, plans and planning schemes as well as policies for national development, he said.

Hahm Seung Heui, Chairman of Forum Oh-rae, said that the sharing of experience among countries will speed up the removal of obstacles hindering Vietnam’s bid to become a developed industrial country.

Vietnam and the RoK elevated their relations to the level of strategic partnership in 2009, he noted, adding that the RoK is currently the largest foreign investor in Vietnam with a total investment of 50 billion USD in 5,600 valid projects. In 2016 alone, RoK businesses invested over 5.5 billion USD in 828 projects.

Meanwhile, Vietnam is also the third largest recipient of investment from the RoK, just behind China and the US.

The RoK is currently the second largest provider of bilateral official assistance for Vietnam after Japan. In terms of trade, the RoK is Vietnam’s third biggest partner with two-way trade reaching 45.1 billion USD in 2016.

Regarding solutions for Vietnam to deal with low growth, Kim Byong Joon, head of the Oh-rae Institute for Policy Research, highlighted the importance of science-technology, development research capacity and improved productivity.

Meanwhile, Dr Nguyen Thi Tue Anh. Vice Director of the Central Institute for Economic Management, said that Vietnam is reforming its growth model to increase productivity and competitiveness.

She stressed that improving qualifications of the workforce is essential, which will also help narrow the gap of competitiveness among regional countries, attract technologies and fully tap opportunities from international economic integration.-VNA