The Vietnam-Belgium Friendship Association (VBFA) has been urged to further promote friendship between the two peoples via the establishment of ties among their localities, businesses, universities, science research institutes and social organisations.

Secretary General of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations (VUFO) Nguyen Thi Hoang Van made the call at the third National Congress of the VBFA for its 2013-2018 tenure in Hanoi on December 18.

Agreeing with orientations reached at the event, Van suggested the association spearhead more initiatives with diverse forms to foster bilateral partnerships in economics, trade, science-technology-environment, education - training, culture and tourism.

She also announced the decision to honour Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam with the insignia “For Peace and Friendship among Nations”.

VBFA members as individuals and collectives were also presented with certificates of merit in recognition of their efforts to consolidate the Vietnam-Belgium friendship and cooperation.

On the occasion, delegates elected a 45-member new executive board led by Chairman Pham Manh Hung, who is also Deputy Minister of Education and Training and Rector of the National Economics University.

The same day, the VUFO and VBFA hosted a ceremony celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Vietnam – Belgium diplomatic ties.-VNA