Ambassador Vu Van Dzung of Vietnam hosted a reception to celebrate the 73rd Anniversary of the Independence Day of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and 25 years of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and South Africa.
Photo: Ambassador Vu Van Dzung of Vietnam and Ms. Sindi Mququ, Chief Director: Central, South & South East Asia, Branch: Asia & Middle East, Department of International Relations and Cooperation
After more than 7 decades since its independence, Vietnam has gained many great achievements in various aspects. Vietnam has become a country of peace and fast development. It's GDP growth at 6,7% a year now, is one of the fastest in the Asia-pacific region and the world. From a war torn country, Vietnam has become a middle income country, with GDP per capita reaching 2343 USD. Vietnam has completed the poverty reduction goals in the UN's Millennium Development Goals before deadline, improved quality in health, education and HIV/AIDS prevention. Unemployment rate decreased, staying at 2,01% in the Quarter 1/2018, said Ambassador Vu Van Dzung.
REMARKS BY H.E. AMBASSADOR VU VAN DZUNG AT THE 73RD NATIONAL DAY RECEPTION IN PRETORIA
30 August 2018
At the outset, I would like to express my warmest welcome to you for your participation at the Reception to celebrate the 73rd Anniversary of the Independence Day of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and 25 years of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and South Africa. I would like to express our gratitude and sincere thanks to Ms. Sindi Mququ, Chief Director: Central, South & South East Asia, Branch: Asia & Middle East, Department of International Relations and Cooperation, for spending your precious time being here with us to honor such solemn occasions.
It is indeed a great honor and privilege for me and my colleagues from the Embassy of Vietnam to receive you all.
73 years ago, on September 2nd 1945, President Ho Chi Minh, our great leader and beloved father, delivered the Declaration of Independence, giving birth to the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, now the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. The resounding Declaration of Independence has urged each and every Vietnamese to join hands to overcome all difficulties and challenges, and resiliently fight for the independence, freedom and unity and develop the nation.
After more than 7 decades since its independence, Vietnam has proudly gained many great achievements in various aspects of the nation and people life.
From a country famous with wars, the Indochina Wars and the Vietnam War, our country has become a country of peace and fast development. It's GDP growth at 6,7% a year now, one of the fastest in the Asia-pacific region and the world.
From a war torn and back ward country, Vietnam has become a middle income country, with GDP per capita reached 2343 USD.The people life has been improved. Vietnam has completed the poverty reduction goals in the UN's Millennium Development Goals before deadline, improved quality in health, education and HIV/AIDS prevention. Unemployment rate decreased, staying at 2,01% in the Quarter 1/2018, compared with year – on - year rate of 2.03 %.
From an isolated and blocked country, Vietnam has become an active and responsible member of the regional and international community. The country has diplomatic relations with over 185 countries and trade with 200 countries and territories, among which 16 countries with strategic and comprehensive partnership relations, including all the UN P5 members and being a member of ASEAN, APEC, UN, … and member of 16 FTA.
2017 marked a successful year in Vietnam's diplomatic work. Our completion of the role of the APEC's rotating chairman in an excellent way became a highlight of the year, which contributed to maintaining the APEC's targets under the world's complicated circumstance. Vietnam has achieved supports from its friends in the region and the world at large as it has been selected as the only candidate of the Asia-Pacific region for a non-permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council in the period of 2020 – 2021. In dealing with dispute in the South China sea, we are of the view that all disputes must be settled by peaceful means in full respect of international laws, especially the UN convention on the Law of the Sea 1982.
The relations between Vietnam and South Africa have experienced many decades of close cooperation and friendship.
The 1955 Bandung Conference is the place that seeds of the solidarity and cooperation between the two liberation movements were sown. The long – standing friendship has continued to be reinforced and enhanced by both sides through our bitter war time for national indolence and freedom.
In 1978, former ANC President Oliver Reginald Tambo visited Vietnam to tap on Vietnam's experiences in the long and hard struggle with great sacrifices for independence and reunification. President OR Tambo then wrote the Report of the Politico-Military Strategy Commission to the ANC National Executive Committee August 1979, also known as the ANC "Green Book" 1979 a strategic handbook for the ANC to fight against Apartheid and gain freedom. In other words, Vietnam has become a source of South Africa's encouragement in the path towards freedom.
Vietnam established the bilateral relations with South Africa 15 years later when the new government was going to emerge. This, once again, proves that the flowers of the noble solidarity, cooperation and friendship between the two sides bloomed in the most painful days.In pursuit of that tradition, Vietnam always attaches importance to developing its traditional friendship and cooperation with South Africa, the only one African country that Vietnam established the Partnership for Cooperation and Development. The bilateral relations between the two sides continue to develop in various areas such as politics and diplomacy, economics and trade, science and technology, security and defense, and environment protection.
Our two-way trade witnessed a remarkable progress, reaching 21.5 million USD, 188.8 million USD and 1 billion USD in 1997, 2007 and 2017 respectively; in other words, from 2 - digit number at the very first start, we have made it 4 - digit number after 25 years of cooperation. A number of Vietnamese delegations at all levels have visited South Africa recently. On the other hand, South Africa has also promoted delegation exchange with Vietnam. Next month, both sides will co-chair the annual Partnership Forum held in South Africa. These evidences have actualized the desire of our General Vo Nguyen Giap who shared with Former President Thabo Mbeki in Vietnam 11 years ago in 2007 that The relationship between Vietnam and South Africa in the time to come will be further developed in all areas, including the political, cultural, defence and other fields… The youth of our two countries will have many more exchanges.
This year marks 25 years of the bilateral relations between Vietnam and South Africa. Based on the available foundation, we wish the two countries to keep developing our achievements and maximizing the available potentials to bring the bilateral cooperation into depth and effectiveness. We are striving to lift the bilateral trade turnover up to 2 billion USD as expected by the leaders, promote delegation exchanges at all levels, conclude more bilateral treaties and agreements in numerous areas and support each other in the regional and international forums.
The year 2018 marks the 128th anniversary of the birth of President Ho Chi Minh and centenary of the birth of President Nelson Mandela. The old words of the late President Nelson Mandela that say Vietnam always stays in my heart; Ho Chi Minh and Ho Chi Minh trail together with the course of national liberation of Vietnam are always an impression to me always stick to my mind and remind me of the intimate and pure friendship of the two leaders and people. Ho Chi Minh and Nelson Mandela are the TWO great fathers leading the TWO different nations with ONE goal, ONE will and ONE ideology which is freedom, equality, democracy, and progress for their people and humankind. The natural engagement between the two countries, differently geographical but similarly joining the same front for freedom in the past and building a nation for peace, stability, prosperity today, is glue for deeper and closer partnership forever and ever.On that spirit, allow me to invite Excellency Ms. Sindi Mququ and all of us to raise our toast:- To the 73rd anniversary of the National Independence Day of Vietnam;- To the ever close relations between Vietnam and South Africa and to the peaceful, stable and prosperous life of the two people;- To good health of Vietnamese and South African leaders, all Honored Guests and friends.
Embassy of Vietnam in South Africa