|Foreign Minister Bùi Thanh Sơn. Photo MOFA|
PARIS – Vietnamese Ambassador to France Đinh Toàn Thắng has said Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bùi Thanh Sơn’s attendance at the 2023 Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Ministerial Council Meeting (MCM) and official visit to France from June 5-8 would provide an opportunity to reaffirm bilateral relations and the determination to promote deeper and closer connections between the two countries.
In an interview granted to the Vietnam News Agency (VNA)'s resident correspondents in Paris, Thắng said it would be the first visit to France by a Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs since the two countries upgraded their relationship to a strategic partnership a decade ago. It was also meant to celebrate the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties and the 10th anniversary of their strategic partnership.
He added that the visit also demonstrated the importance of the foreign policies of Việt Nam and France, which both strongly head towards cooperation, peace, security and development.
As a key player in Europe, France is actively following a dynamic and comprehensive policy towards the Asia-Pacific region. Meanwhile, Việt Nam, with its active and proactive integration policy, along with development achievements and growth potential, is enhancing its position in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and regional cooperation mechanisms, while continuing to vigorously pursue a foreign policy of independence, self-reliance and tightening relations with key partners in Europe.
The visit would contribute to exploring new directions of cooperation to meet the urgent and diverse requirements of the current period, including sustainable development, enhancing self-reliance, and consolidating the two countries' positions amidst the ongoing global economic shifts.
The ambassador affirmed that Việt Nam and France were standing in front of numerous opportunities to elevate their cooperation to a new height in the coming years and decades, driven by the determination of leaders, the support of people from walks of life, and the active engagement of partners across all fields.
According to the diplomat, while in France, Sơn is scheduled to meet the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), the Secretary-General of the International Organisation of La Francophonie (OIF), and the Secretary-General of the OECD to further deepen relations with these organisations.
As the Co-Chair of the OECD Southeast Asia Regional Programme (SEARP) for the 2022-2025 period, Việt Nam is making positive contributions to promoting relations between the OECD and Southeast Asia. Việt Nam has been actively joining in activities of the OECD Development Centre in various fields, including economy, finance, education, gender equality, and more. Every year, Việt Nam makes significant contributions to the OECD Development Centre's Economic Outlook reports for Southeast Asia, China, and India. In 2024, Việt Nam, together with Australia and other members of the SEARP Office, will organise important events to mark the 10th anniversary of the SEARP.
Commenting on the prospects of cooperation between Việt Nam and the OECD, Thắng stressed that the OECD currently had practical projects to assist Việt Nam in reviewing the effectiveness of policies and development needs of the economy, such as digital economy and green growth. In the financial sector, Việt Nam had officially joined in the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) and signed the Multilateral Agreement on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters (MAAC), which are important steps towards transparency in Việt Nam's tax and financial system during its integration with the global financial system.
The OECD MCM 2023 will be the first attended by Việt Nam at the ministerial level, where the country is expected to make practical contributions to the meeting's focal themes.
At this year's event, the OECD also aims to strengthen cooperation with Southeast Asia and beyond, including the Indo-Pacific. For the first time, the OECD will establish a framework for the Indo-Pacific to shape a common policy for the region. VNS