Delegates at a workshop on the sidelines of the conference on cooperation between Vietnam's and France's localities. (Source: VNA)

Can Tho (VNA) – Vietnamese and French localities discussed expanding cooperation with a focus placed on tourism at a workshop held on September 14 on the sidelines of the 10th Conference on cooperation between the two countries’ localities in Can Tho city.

Participants at the workshop focused on developing eco-tourism and visa policies.

After the Vietnamese government issued a 15-day visa exemption policy for five Western countries, including France, French tourist arrivals to Vietnam in the first half of 2016 increased 16 percent from the previous year.

2014 figures from France’s Embassy in Vietnam showed that about 11,000 visas were granted to Vietnamese citizens, up 62 percent from 2013.

To promote tourism cooperation between Vietnam and France, Vietnam asked France to assist Vietnam in promotion activities and human resource training. It also encouraged French companies to invest in tourism.

France invested 175 million USD in 19 projects in hotels and tourism by 2014.

Also at the workshop, participants discussed economic cooperation. They shared experience in implementing cooperation programmes and seeking ways or solutions for the future cooperation.

According to Dominique Cap, Deputy Major of Brest city, Hai Phong and Brest have only developed cooperation in a few fields like seaports, health and culture.

In 2015, Hai Phong participated in a project on supporting the government in fighting climate change in which the French Development Agency and the Brest Technopolis assisted Hai Phong to protect small fish species and species in danger near Cat Ba island.-VNA