The Vietnamese Embassy in Sweden held a ceremony in Stockholm on February 20 to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the two countries’ diplomatic ties.

Addressing the event, Vietnamese Ambassador Tran Van Hinh thanked Sweden for its support of Vietnam over the past 45 years.

Reviewing important milestones in bilateral relations, Hinh stated that regular visits and meetings by the two countries’ high-ranking leaders, especially the Vietnam visit by King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia in February 2004, have created a firm foundation for the bilateral partnership.

In the past three years, two-way trade enjoyed an average annual increase of 28 percent, topping 1.1 billion USD in 2013.

The diplomat also acknowledged contributions made by the community of more than 15,000 Vietnamese people living in Sweden to nurturing the two countries’ friendship.

Swedish Minister for Trade Ewa Bjorling said that the two sides still hold great cooperation potential, especially in Sweden’s specialist fields of environment, climate change, urban transport and education.

She expressed her hope that together with world-famous companies like Ericsson, Electrolux and Tetra Pak, more and more Swedish businesses will invest in Vietnam, confirming that Vietnamese enterprises are always welcomed in Sweden.

Sweden prioritises promoting economic, trade and investment ties with other countries and its partners, she said, adding that she hopes negotiations on a free trade agreement between Vietnam and the EU will come to a succesful end later this year to help boost trade exchanges between Vietnam and the EU in general and Sweden in particular.

On this occasion, the Vietnamese Embassy also introduced the image of Vietnam’s land, people and culture to Swedish and international friends through art performances, an oil-painting exhibition and a Vietnamese culinary event.-VNA