Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
The strong development of Belgium – Vietnam cooperation has been in line with the needs and strengths of both sides. Vietnam has been a priority partner of this country for many years. Belgium has focused on supporting Vietnam in various fields including water resource management, public health, environmental sanitation associated with urbanisation and climate change, education and agriculture.
The Belgian Government’s official development assistance to Vietnam has been increased annually. Belgium has also strongly supported the activities of the United Nations in Vietnam. In addition, many regions, universities and non-governmental organisations from Belgium have operated effectively in Vietnam.
In particular, the French-speaking community of Belgium has implemented cooperation programmes with Vietnamese partners in different areas: education, culture, science, healthcare, languages and construction, across around 25 projects. In addition to sending experts to Vietnam, Belgium has received many experts, officials, students and trainees from Vietnam to study, research and work on various majors such as: business administration, river roads, seaports, agriculture and education.
Belgium is the sixth largest trading partner of Vietnam among the member countries of the European Union (EU). Trade exchange between the two countries has continuously increased every year.
In 2019, the two countries’ two-way export turnover reached over US$3 billion. Accordingly, Vietnam’s trade surplus to Belgium was nearly US$2 billion. The main import and export commodities between the two sides are machinery, equipment, spare parts, steel, chemicals, textiles, footwear and agricultural products. Belgium is now the seventh largest export market of Vietnam in the EU.
Several large investors from Belgium have developed their projects in Vietnam in the areas of rivers and seaports. Many Belgian enterprises have proactively operated in Vietnam in the fields of food, aquaculture, coffee, cocoa, waste management and treatment.
The Belgian enterprises have successfully operated around 70 projects with total registered investment capital of more than US$1 billion. The country ranks 23rd among 131 countries and territories investing in Vietnam.
Among ASEAN, Vietnam is the third country to have signeding a Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation Agreement and the second nation which has entered intosigning a free trade agreement and investment protection agreement with EU.
Vietnam is currently one of several Asia-Pacific countries with extensive relations with the EU within the framework of comprehensive cooperation and partnership in politics, economy, trade, investment, defence and security. Vietnam has always attached great importance to its relationship with EU, including Belgium. The promotion of the comprehensive partnership with the EU is one of the pillars of Vietnam’s foreign policy. According to the Vietnamese Embassy in Belgium and Head of the Vietnamese Delegation to the EU Vu Anh Quang, Vietnam – Belgium relations have been increasingly strongly developed.
Thanks to the attention off leaders as well as partners from both countries, the cooperation and exchanges between Vietnam and Belgium that have brought mutual benefits will be further strengthened in all aspects in the coming time including smart agriculture, safe food, environmental technology, renewable energy, wind power, solar power, healthcare, education and training, seaports, trade and bilateral investment. In the current context, the two sides aim to achieve a common goal of sustainable growth in the post-Covid-19 period.
* With a special geographical location, the Kingdom of Belgium can rightly be assessed as a dynamic centre in terms of politics and socio-economy and a county with a diverse culture. Over the past few years, Belgium has held an important position. both in the EU and the world.
Belgium is a federal state with three linguistic communities who use French, Dutch and German. It also consists of three territories including Brussels with two official languages of French and Dutch, the Flamande speaking Dutch language and Wallonie using both French and German.