President Truong Tan Sang proposed Japan’s Fukuoka prefecture expand cooperation with Vietnamese localities at a reception for the province’s Governor Ogawa Hiroshi in Hanoi on August 29.

At the reception, President Sang stressed that Japan is Vietnam’s leading partner, adding Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s selection of Vietnam as his first destination after taking office proved Japan’s appreciation of the Southeast Asian nation.

He praised Fukuoka on its successful organisation of activities introducing Vietnam’s image to Japanese people.

The President voiced his support for Japan’s initiative on increasing exchanges between the two countries’ youths.

The Fukuoka leader said he is pleased to see Vietnam’s gigantic development in recent years, adding that representatives of the prefecture’s authorities and businesses accompany him to study Vietnam ’s situation and seek opportunities to boost multifaceted cooperation with the country.

He highly valued the traditional ties between Fukuoka and Hanoi, saying that besides economic cooperation, the two sides should pay attention to cultural exchanges.

In the coming time, Fukuoka will send 1,000 high school students to Vietnam to join exchanges with their Vietnamese peers, Ogawa Hiroshi said.

Through the Fukuoka Days in Vietnam, the prefecture wants to promote the image of Japan in general and Fukuoka in particular to Vietnamese people, he added.

He affirmed Vietnam’s land and people have become closer to Fukuoka, reflected by the opening of the Vietnamese consulate in Fukuoka and a direct air route to the prefecture.-VNA