Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam and Australia have opportunities to advance their economic and trade ties, said Secretary of the Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee Nguyen Thien Nhan.

At a reception for Australian Ambassador to Vietnam Craig Chittick in HCM City on September 26, Nhan said the Vietnamese metropolis has good ties with many Australian localities, voicing his hope that relations will continue to thrive.

For his part, the ambassador highlighted the rapid development of economic relations between Vietnam and Australia, with two-way trade increasing sharply annually and more flights launched to connect the two countries.

Also, bilateral education collaboration is also thriving, he said, noting that tens of thousands of Vietnamese are studying in Australia.

Australia is the 19th largest investor in Vietnam with 407 projects worth 1.85 billion USD and is also an important market of Vietnamese investors who are running 36 projects with total capital of nearly 200 million USD in the country.

Australia is the seventh largest trade partner of Vietnam. Two-way trade reached about 5.3 billion USD in 2016, with Vietnam’s exports valued at 2.86 billion USD.-VNA