New Zealand’s Governor-General Jerry Mateparae will be in Vietnam from August 3-8 for a State-level visit at the invitation of President Truong Tan Sang.

This is his first trip to Vietnam since Mateparae took office, and only the second visit of a New Zealand Governor-General.

Vietnam-New Zealand comprehensive partnership has seen a boost in recent years with all-level delegation exchanges and the maintenance of the Political Consultation mechanism, with the 9 th meeting taking place on July 11 this year in Wellington .

In terms of economics and trade ties, two-way trade increases year after year, standing at 525 million USD in 2011, 569 million USD in 2012, and 335 million USD as of June 2013, up 18 percent from the same period last year.

However, Vietnam still has a trade deficit with New Zealand , with an import value of 220 million USD in 2012. Vietnam ’s import staples are dairy products, wood items, materials for garments, textiles, foot wear, iron and steel, and machineries.

Regarding investment, New Zealand is involved in 18 projects with a total capital of over 76.3 million USD, ranking 40 th of 92 countries and territories investing in Vietnam .

The two countries have accomplished talks on a Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement. The signing of the deal is scheduled for the upcoming visit of the Governor-General.

New Zealand ’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) for Vietnam has risen gradually from 3.2 million NZ dollars in the 2003-2004 fiscal year to 10.5 million dollars in 2012-2013. The assistance prioritises human resources training, sustainable development, and agricultural and rural development.

As for national security and defence, the two sides have maintained the exchange of delegations and information under a cooperation agreement on transnational crime prevention reached by the two sides’ police forces in 2010, as well as under the framework of the ASEAN-New Zealand Joint Statement on international cooperation in anti-terrorism in 2005.

New Zealand ’s Ministry of Defence has helped Vietnam in training military staff under the Mutual Assistance Programme (MAP). The two sides have also agreed to lift their annual Defence Dialogue mechanism from a departmental to deputy-ministerial level, with the most recent meeting held in Hanoi in September 2012.

Education is a potential for both, with a new agreement on education and training cooperation signed last April.

Vietnam has sent 2,150 students to study in New Zealand .

The two sides established a joint commission on education cooperation with its first meeting in December 2010 in New Zealand ’s capital city, Wellington .

Vietnam and New Zealand have been working closely together and support each other at regional and international organisations and forums, including the United Nations and the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).

As an initiator of the Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (TPP), New Zealand has been active in supporting and coordinating with Vietnam in the TPP negotiation process as well as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

The visit of the Governor-General this time aims to affirm New Zealand’s intention to reinforce bilateral and all-around cooperation with Vietnam as well as exchange views on regional and international issues of common concern.-VNA