|President Truong Tan Sang meets with nearly 700 overseas Vietnamese yesterday at HCM City's Nha Rong Wharf. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Vu
HCM CITY (VNS) — Nearly 700 overseas Vietnamese from different countries and territories gathered yesterday at HCM City's Nha Rong Wharf to join this year's Homeland Spring programme, which welcomes the Year of the Goat.
The event features performances by popular local and overseas artists and takes place every year to welcome those returning home for the country's biggest holiday. Broadcast live, it was jointly organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese and the municipal People's Committee.
Speaking at the event, President Truong Tan Sang said the whole country had strived to overcome difficulties last year, maintaining political stability, improving living conditions for local people, promoting global integration and raising the country's prestige in regional and international arenas. Overseas Vietnamese had made great contributions to these important achievements, he said.
Due to political and economic changes in many countries last year, overseas Vietnamese met many difficulties. However, the Party, State and people worked with authorities of other countries to protect the interests, life and property of Vietnamese nationals abroad, he said.
Sang took this occasion to extend New Year wishes to all Vietnamese people, hoping that overseas Vietnamese would continue contributing to the national construction and development cause and acting as a bridge to boost the friendship and co-operation between Viet Nam and other countries.
Vietnamese-Filipino Johnathan Hanh Nguyen said the Party and State had clearly shown that overseas Vietnamese were an indispensable part of the country and had many favourable policies for them. However, he said more specific and clearer policies were needed to create conditions for overseas Vietnamese to return to work and study.
Vietnamese-American David Duong said Vietnamese nationals abroad were always proud of the country and wished to contribute further to national development and construction.
Earlier the same day, President Sang joined the overseas Vietnamese to offer incense to the Hung Kings at the National Cultural and Historical Park and to President Ho Chi Minh at Nha Rong Wharf.
There are approximately 4.5 million Vietnamese living and working in 103 countries and territories. — VNS