Photo exhibition spotlighting Vietnam- RoK relations underway in Hanoi hinh anh 1VNA General Director Vu Viet Trang speaks at the opening ceremony (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – A photo exhibition themed “30 years of Vietnam- Republic of Korea cooperation”, co-organised by the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) and the Yonhap News Agency of the RoK, opened in Hanoi on December 14 on the occasion of the 30th founding anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries (1992-2022).

The 8-day event, which also aims to welcome the elevation of the ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership, features 60 file photos which reflect the two countries’ partnership in various fields from politics-foreign affairs, security-defence, economy, trade, and investment, to education, science-technology, and people-to-people exchange.

In her opening remarks, VNA General Director Vu Viet Trang said the exhibition is a space that comprehensively reflects the outcomes of such cooperation, including important milestones and historical moments of the bilateral ties over the past three decades.

It is also a testament to the effective professional cooperation between the VNA and Yonhap which practically contributes to strengthening the friendship and understanding between the two peoples on the basis of common interests and similarities in history and traditional culture, Trang noted. 

Photo exhibition spotlighting Vietnam- RoK relations underway in Hanoi hinh anh 2At the exhibition (Photo: VNA)

She expressed her belief that the images on display will give the public an insight into the history of the close relationship between the two countries, outstanding events and achievements that they have recorded, and important contributions that the peoples and businesses of Vietnam and the RoK have made in social and economic development.

President and CEO of Yonhap Seong Ghi-hong said that the photo exhibition is a highlight event in a series of activities co-organised by the two news agencies to mark the founding anniversary of the Vietnam – RoK diplomatic ties.

The imprints reviewed through the photos displayed at the exhibition can be considered as a motivation for the two sides to further expand the bilateral relationship and promote cooperation in the future, he stressed.

The bilateral relations have recorded important achievements in almost all fields - politics, economy, culture, society, and education. Notably, the RoK is one of Vietnam's most important economic partners, especially in direct investment, development cooperation, labour, tourism and trade.

Vietnam and the RoK established their diplomatic relations on December 22, 1992 but they had engaged in cooperative activities earlier. In August 2001, the two nations issued a joint statement on the comprehensive partnership in the 21st century on the occasion of Vietnamese President Tran Duc Luong's visit to the RoK. In October 2009, the bilateral ties were upgraded to a strategic cooperative partnership during the Vietnam visit by President Lee Myung-bak.

On political, national defence-security cooperation, the exchange of delegations and bilateral meetings have been maintained in both online and in-person formats.

As of September 2022, the RoK remained the biggest foreign investor in Vietnam with 80.52 billion USD, accounting for 18.6% of the total investment in the country.

With 1.2 billion USD in preferential loans from the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) for 2012-2015 and 1.5 billion USD for 2016-2020, the RoK was the second biggest provider of official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnam. The RoK was also the third biggest trade partner of Vietnam with two-way trade of 66.65 billion USD in 2019, 65 billion USD in 2020 and 78 billion USD in 2021.

On the back of the Vietnam-Korea Free Trade Agreement (VKFTA) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), the two countries are looking toward 100 billion USD in bilateral trade next year and 150 billion USD by 2030, by creating favourable conditions for Vietnam’s exports of agro-aquatic products and seasonal fruits.

Vietnam is the second biggest source of guest workers to the RoK, behind China, while the RoK was the second largest recipient of Vietnamese guest workers, behind Taiwan (China). At present, about 48,000 Vietnamese labourers are working in the RoK.

In recent years, the RoK has emerged as the second biggest source of tourists to Vietnam, behind China, reaching 4.2 million in 2019, up 23.1% from the previous year. The number of Vietnamese visitors to the RoK reached 550,000, up 21.9% year on year.

Bilateral judicial, educational, agricultural and sci-tech cooperation has also yielded fruits over the past years.

The two countries agreed to upgrade their ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership during President Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to the RoK earlier this month./.