National Secretary of the French Communist Party (FCP) Pierre Laurent arrived in Ho Chi Minh City on April 17, opening his first visit to Vietnam at the invitation of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) leader.

While receiving the French communist on the same day, HCM City Party Committee Secretary Le Thanh Hai spoke highly of Laurent’s visit, saying that it will help strengthen the traditional long-lasting friendship between the two Parties.

He affirmed that the CPV and Vietnamese people always keep in mind and show gratitude to the great support and assistance of the FCP and progressive people in France to Vietnam during its struggle for national independence and liberation.

HCM City has had effective cooperation programmes and projects with two French localities, namely Lyon and Rhone-Alpes Region in the areas of culture, preservation, education, health, science and technology, Hai said.

For his part, Pierre Laurent affirmed that the FCP always respects Vietnamese comrades and memorises the struggle that the two parties had stood side by side.

He said he chose HCM City as the first leg of his Vietnam visit because the city is named after President Ho Chi Minh and because he is impressed with the city’s strong development even in the past global economic crisis.

The FCP leader expressed his hope that the cooperation between the two sides will further develop in the future./.