(Source: Embassy of Spain in Vietnam)
Hanoi (VNA) – The Vietnam-Spain strategic partnership has been reinforced in various fields throughout the years, from economy, trade to culture exchange and education, enhancing the friendship between their peoples.

Vietnam and Spain established diplomatic ties on May 23, 1977, and a strategic partnership 32 years later during the visit to Spain in 2009 by President Nguyen Minh Triet.

Spain is one of Vietnam’s biggest EU trade partners and plays a vital role in solving international issues. It also serves as an entrance to the Atlantic Ocean, which helps Vietnamese goods enter other European markets.

Spain’s support for Vietnam in fostering comprehensive relations with the EU and negotiating the signing of a partnership and cooperation agreement with the bloc is vital to Vietnam’s intensive international economic integration efforts.

Meanwhile, Spain sees Vietnam as an emerging country, with a dynamic and increasingly integrated economy.

Vietnam is developing its economy in connection with promoting social fairness, and a successful model in realising UN Millennium Development Goals of poverty reduction and the effective use of development assistance. It is also a bridge to connect Spain with other Southeast Asian nations.

The two countries have recorded increasing trade, with two-way trade hitting 2.9 billion USD in 2016 and 835 million USD in the first four months of this year.

Vietnam mainly exports aquatic products, coffee, textiles, rice and footwear to Spain, while importing chemicals, machines, pharmaceuticals, milk, electronics and spare parts.

As of April this year, Spain ranked 46th among 116 countries and territories investing in Vietnam with 59 projects in infrastructure development, renewable energy, water supply, waste management, heritage conservation, tourism, and gender equality.

Spain is a crucial tourism market of Vietnam, with more than 58,000 Spanish tourists visiting the Southeast Asian nation in 2016, up 29 percent from 2015. Thanks to Vietnam’s visa exemption, airline links and strengthened partnerships among enterprises, the two countries have potential for closer tourism affiliation.

2017 marks an important milestone in Vietnam-Spain ties when the two sides will celebrate the 40th founding anniversary of diplomatic ties, which is expected to boost the strategic partnership.-VNA