Viet Nam News
MOSCOW — Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Phạm Bình Minh met with several other attendees on the sidelines of the 17th Francophonie Summit in Yerevan, Armenia on Thursday.
The summit opened on Thursday, bringing together nearly 3,500 delegates from 84 countries and territories that are involved in the International Organisation of La Francophonie (OIF).
Minh met with Foreign Minister of Mali Camara Kamissa and agreed to increase high-level visits to boost relations. He asked Mali to provide Vietnamese goods with broader market access and step up ties in telecommunications and agriculture, fields in which Việt Nam has successfully invested in African nations. Kamissa said Mali’s foreign policy centred around diversifying relations, particularly with countries from the Asia-Pacific region.
The Deputy PM later met with Andorra FM Maria Ubach Font to discuss ways to deepen understanding between the two nations. They agreed to bolster people-to-people exchange, and Font added that Andorra is ready to share its tourism experience with Việt Nam.
In a meeting with Lebanese Minister of Tourism Avedis Guidania, Minh lauded the relationship between Việt Nam and Lebanon in recent years. He said there is room to expand co-operation and suggested Lebanon accept guest workers from Việt Nam. The two officials agreed to focus on trade, tourism, investment and mutual support at international forums.
Minh also met with Haiti FM Bocchit Edmond and expressed delight at the development of economic ties between the countries. Edmond said Haiti values its relationship with Việt Nam and appreciates what Viettel’s work in Haiti has contributed to the society. He said Haiti hoped to welcome more Vietnamese businesses soon.
Speaking with Director General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Audrey Azoulay, Minh hailed the assistance UNESCO provided in recent years and said he expected it to continue. Minh asked for support for Việt Nam’s candidacy to be a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the 2020 – 2021 period. Việt Nam is the only candidate from the Asia-Pacific region.
This year’s Francophonie Summit is titled “Living together in solidarity, sharing humanist values and respect for diversity: sources of peace and prosperity in the Francophone space.” It is a platform for OIF members to face common challenges including terrorism, poverty, disease, water and food security, climate change and international migration.
The OIF was established in 1970 to engage its 84 member states and governments (58 members and 26 observers), which together represent more than a third of the UN members and account for a population of over 900 million people, including 274 million French speakers.
The IOF organises multilateral political activities that benefit French-speaking populations. Việt Nam has been an OIF member since 1979. It hosted the summit’s 7th edition in Hà Nội in 1997 which saw the adoption of the Charter of La Francophonie and the election of the first OIF Secretary General. — VNS