Vietnamese Ambassador to Vietnam Pham Quoc Tru presents credentials to Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita (Photo: VNA)

Algiers (VNA) – Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita expressed his hope to strengthen partnership with Vietnam in many fields during a meeting with Vietnamese Ambassador Pham Quoc Tru who presented his credentials to him in Mali’s capital city of Mamako on March 27.

President Keita showed his warm sentiments to Vietnam as well as his admiration towards President Ho Chi Minh.

He said that he hopes Ambassador Tru will work to contribute to the growth of the Vietnam-Mali relations.

For his part, Ambassador Tru conveyed President Tran Dai Quang’s invitation to visit Vietnam to the host.

He affirmed Vietnam’s wish and determination to further bolster partnership with Mali in all areas.

Earlier on March 26, the diplomat had a meeting with Malian Foreign Minister Tieman Hubert Coulibaly, during which the two sides discussed measures to boost the development of cooperation between the two countries in the future, especially in economy.

They agreed on the need to increase the exchange of delegations, and the completion of legal framework to facilitate bilateral cooperation. They concurred to resume meetings of the Inter-Governmental Committee, while strengthening collaboration between the two Chambers of Commerce and Industry in connecting businesses of both sides and promoting trade and investment activities.

The two countries will coordinate with and support each other at international forums.

Vietnam and Mali established diplomatic relations in October 10, 1960, just one month after Mali declared its independence.

In 1962, Vietnam opened its embassy in Mali, which was one of the first two embassies in Africa. The Malian side also supported Vietnam during the war against the US, the ambassador told Vietnam News Agency’s correspondent in Algiers.

The two countries have enjoyed sound partnership, he said, adding that the sound traditional friendship between the two countries over the past decades has laid firm foundation for the growth of bilateral partnership in the future.

However, he pointed to instable political situation in Mali, which hinders the development of bilateral ties. He said that he hopes the situation will be improved, and the two countries will strengthen cooperation in various fields, especially economy and trade.

Two-way trade between Vietnam and Mali has increased through years. In 2016, Vietnam’s imports from Mali were about 45 million USD worth of goods, while exports were valued at nearly 5 million USD. The figures surged sharply to over 42 million USD and 30 million USD, respectively, in the first nine months of 2017. - VNA