At the ceremony to mark 72nd anniversary of Italy’s National Day (Photo: hcmcpv.org.vn)

HCM City (VNA) – The Consulate General of Italy in Ho Chi Minh City hosted a reception on June 1 to mark the 72nd anniversary of Italy’s National Day and the 45th anniversary of Vietnam-Italy diplomatic ties.

Cecilia Piccioni, Ambassador of Italy to Vietnam and representatives of the Italian community in the city attended the event, among others.

Dante Brandi, Consul General of Italy in HCM City, said the relations between Italy and Vietnam have been consolidated over the past 45 years and grown strongly in various realms since the countries signed an agreement on the establishment of strategic partnership five years ago.

The official said he is confident that the Consulate General would become a reliable consulting destination in terms of consular affairs for the Italian community, the municipal HCM City authority and 22 provinces and cities in south Vietnam.

The Consulate General will work harder to step up its ties with local authorities in the southern region to boost cooperation in sectors with potential, like infrastructure, water and waste management, smart city development, industry-agriculture, and cultural exchange, he said.

Representing the municipal administration, Pham Duc Hai, Vice Chairman of the HCM City People’s Council stated that the signing of a joint statement on the establishment of strategic partnership in 2013 reflected the wish of both Vietnam and Italy to lift their ties to a new height as well as creating a firmer foundation to intensify their relations.

He said HCM City is one of the leading localities in stepping up cooperation with Italy and it will increase visit exchanges and expand cooperation with Italian localities.

In 2017, HCM City made a two-way trade value of 624 million USD with Italy, up 5 percent from 2016.

As of May, 2018, Italy had invested in 34 projects in HCM City with a total registered capital of 69 million USD, ranking 25th out of 95 countries and territories investing in the city.

HCM City and Italy boast potential for cooperation in garment and textile, and food and foodstuff processing. -VNA