President Tran Dai Quang (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – President Tran Dai Quang and his spouse left Hanoi on May 29 for a five-day State visit to Japan at the invitation of the Japanese State.

Vietnam and Japan are celebrating the 45th anniversary of their diplomatic ties this year. Bilateral partnership is now at its best time in history since the establishment of diplomatic relationship. Senior leaders of the two sides have maintained regular visits and meetings at international and regional forums.

The two sides have implemented important cooperation mechanisms, and cooperated closely and effectively at multilateral forums such as the United Nations, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum (APEC), and the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).

Japan has been the leading economic partner of Vietnam. The two sides have granted each other the most favoured nation tariff since 1999. In 2017, two-way trade revenue reached 33.4 billion USD, a rise of 16.8 percent over 2016. In the first three months of 2018, the figure reached 8.7 billion USD, up 15.7 percent over the same period last year.

In 2017, Japanese investment in Vietnam hit a record high at 9.11 billion USD, making it the biggest investor in Vietnam. As of March 2018, Japan has run 3,693 FDI projects in Vietnam worth 49.839 billion USD, ranking second in 116 countries and territories investing in Vietnam.

From the beginning of 2018 to March 20, Japanese investors poured 592.67 million USD into 96 new projects, 42 underway projects and capital contribution or share purchase deals, turning Japan into the fourth largest foreign investor of Vietnam.

So far, Japan has been the biggest ODA provider of Vietnam, focusing on infrastructure building, competitiveness enhancement, high-quality human resource training and climate change, greatly contributing to Vietnam’s socio-economic development.

From 1992 to the end of the 2016 fiscal year (March 2017), Japan committed about 30.5 billion USD of ODA for Vietnam. Last year, the two sides signed deals for five projects funded by Japanese ODA loans, three ODA borrowing agreements, and four projects using Japanese non-refundable aid. Japan has also pledged to provide ODA to two new projects in the 2017 fiscal year.

Bilateral partnership in security-defence, agriculture, education-training, and labour have also been fruitful. People-to-people exchange, cultural and tourism affiliation have seen strong development.

The State visit of President Tran Dai Quang and his spouse aims to affirm Vietnam’s consistent external policy of independence, self-reliance, multilateralisation and diversification in international relations, as well as the importance that the country attaches to strengthening the extensive strategic partnership with Japan.

The visit also aims to bolster the close relationship and political trust between senior leaders of Vietnam and Japan, contributing to strengthening the bilateral extensive strategic partnership.-VNA