Hosting the 132nd Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly (IPU-132) is historically and diplomatically significant for Vietnam, demonstrating that the Vietnamese legislature is a responsible IPU member with a strong global integration spirit.

The late-March event coincides with the 36th anniversary of Vietnamese National Assembly (NA)’s membership to the IPU and the 126th anniversary of the founding of the IPU, Chairman of the NA’s Committee for External Relations Tran Van Hang told the Vietnam News Agency.

As Deputy Head of the IPU-132’s organising board, Hang said 2015 is a crucial year to review the 5-year implementation of the Political Platform adopted by the 11th National Party Congress in preparation for the 12th National Party Congress, as well as celebrations for the 85th founding anniversary of the Communist Party of Vietnam, the 70th anniversary of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, the 125th birth anniversary of the late President Ho Chi Minh, and the 40th anniversary of southern liberation and national reunification.

Themed “Sustainable Development Goals: Turning words into action", the IPU-132 will attract top leaders of global parliaments, regional inter-parliamentary and international organisations, distinguished guests, and foreign reporters.

According to him, sustainable development goals will replace the UN Millennium Development Goals which are expected to be fully materialised this year, covering 17 goals and 169 tasks across poverty reduction, improvement of education-training and health care, development of more sustainable cities, climate change mitigation, and forest and ocean protection.

Since January 2014, the board has worked tirelessly on comprehensive and thorough preparations, including establishing and fine-tuning apparatus of the Steering Board, the Organising Board, the Secretariat, and sub-committees on information popularisation, reception, security, healthcare, financial logistics as well as launching a logo and website designed exclusively for the event. The activities have been organised up to international diplomatic standards and are compatible with the agreement on organising IPU-132 and the IPU practices.

Hang added that the agenda would cover a breadth of issues regarding peace, security, politics, democracy, socio-economics and the environment, among others. The global forum would be a platform for parliamentarians to raise their voice on critical issues worldwide and those relevant to the United Nations agenda.

He said the focus is to screen, propose and press forward agenda contents in line with the IPU’s priorities towards achieving harmony between national interests and those of the region and the world.

Vietnam put forward several initiatives accepted by the IPU, including discussions on shaping new mechanisms on water resource management and promoting parliamentary action on the issue.

Vietnam is also set to discuss several draft documents with the IPU Secretariat, including a joint statement or the Hanoi declaration.

The country will also join the Assembly’s resolutions on peace, security, democracy and human rights, boosting cooperation between IPU and the UN, he concluded.

The Vietnamese NA officially became a member of the IPU in April 1979.

The IPU, established in 1889, currently has 166 members and 10 associate members and works in close cooperation with the UN, regional inter-parliamentary organizations, and international inter-governmental and non-governmental organisations.-VNA