Ambassador seeks cooperation chances for Vietnamese, Italian localities hinh anh 1Vietnamese Ambassador to Italy Nguyen Thi Bich Hue speaks at a Lunar New Year gathering of Vietnamese people in Milan city (Photo: VNA)

Rome (VNA) – Vietnamese Ambassador to Italy Nguyen Thi Bich Hue paid working visits to Lombardy and Piedmont, two key economic regions of the European country, and Turin city on January 27-28 to explore cooperation chances between Vietnam and northern Italian localities.

Talking to President of the Lombardy regional government Attilio Fontana and officials of Piedmont, Hue affirmed the intensive development of the Vietnam-Italy strategic partnership, especially via high-ranking delegation exchanges in 2019.
She stressed that the two countries are becoming increasingly important to each other as seen through the fact that Vietnam is the largest trade partner and ranks second among investment partners of Italy in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Bilateral trade reached 5.4 billion USD in 2019, including about 1.6 billion USD of trade between Lombardy and Vietnam.

As the European Parliament is preparing to ratify the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), the ambassador said this agreement is an important document which will create considerable opportunities for businesses and economic links in some mutually beneficial fields like mechanics, automobile, pharmaceutical, hi-tech agriculture, food industry, infrastructure, transport, innovation and design.

Hue also highlighted the encouraging outcomes of the connections in higher education and research, considering this as a catalyst for sustainable cooperation between the two countries. She expressed her hope that the regions’ administrations will create more conditions and grant more scholarships for Vietnamese students.

For his part, Lombardy President Attilio Fontana said the sound development of Vietnam-Italy relations is a very important factor for not only Vietnam, but also Italy and Lombardy.

The regional government is always ready to support Vietnamese firms that wish to develop in Lombardy, and it hopes for more concrete cooperation projects for the time ahead, he noted.

A leader of Piedmont also voiced hope for stronger ties with Vietnam, particularly after the EVFTA takes effect, noting that this region is ready to assist Vietnamese businesses who want to learn about the spheres Piedmont has strength in like mechanics, aerospace, health care and research.

Meanwhile, Turin Mayor Chiara Appendino emphasised the potential for cooperation with Vietnam and hoped to implement the cooperation deal with Ho Chi Minh City in such areas as tourism, transport and urban management.

During her trips, Ambassador Hue also had working sessions with the mayor of Pianezza and representatives of the Pininfarina S.P.A company, and joined Lunar New Year gatherings of Vietnamese people in Milan and Pianezza./.