The Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations and the Vietnam-Japan Friendship Association (VJFA)’s Ho Chi Minh City chapter jointly held a ceremony in the city on December 11 to mark the 81 st birthday of Japanese Emperor Akihito and the country’s National Day (December 23, 1933-2014).

Addressing the event, Chairman of the VJFA HCM City Nguyen Cong Tanh and Japanese Consul General to the city Nakajima Satoshi highlighted the increasingly developing ties between the two nations in recent years, saying the two countries have become each other’s important partners in all aspects, from politics, diplomacy, economy, trade, investment and sci-technology, to cultural and people-to-people exchange.

Nakajima Satoshi noted that the year 2013 witnessed eventful cooperation and exchange activities between the two sides, with visits by their high-ranking leaders.

During President Truong Tan Sang’s state visit to Japan in March this year, bilateral relations was lifted to an intensive strategic partnership for peace and prosperity in Asia, he said.

The Japanese diplomat revealed that the Japanese Government will continue maintaining official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnam at the highest level, especially in infrastructure and human resources development, competitiveness improvement, and disaster prevention.

The country will also retain many preferential policies for Vietnamese students who wish to study in Japan , he added.

Japan is now one of the leading foreign investors in Vietnam , with 2,300 projects worth over 35 billion USD. The country is also the largest provider of ODA for Vietnam.-VNA