Hanoi (VNA) – A high-ranking delegation of Vietnam led by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh leaves Hanoi on October 18 to attend the Association of Southeast Asian Nations - Gulf Cooperation Council (ASEAN - GCC) Summit and pay a visit to Saudi Arabia from October 18 to 20 at the invitation of the King of Saudi Arabia, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.
This is the first summit between ASEAN and the GCC since they set up relations in 1990 and adopted a joint vision in 2009. The event is an important milestone in elevating the cooperation between the two regional organisations to a new height to meet both sides’ demand.
In that context, relations between Vietnam and GCC member countries have been flourishing. Their trade has reached 12.5 billion USD. Foreign direct investment (FDI) from GCC countries in Vietnam currently stands at about 1 billion USD.
Meanwhile, trade between Vietnam and Saudi Arabia topped 2.7 billion USD in 2022. A number of big businesses from Saudi Arabia are implementing investment projects in the Southeast Asian nation. About 4,000 - 5,000 Vietnamese people are working in the GCC country.
However, much room remains for cooperation between Vietnam and GCC members, including Saudi Arabia.
PM Chinh’s visit to Saudi Arabia is of importance as it both reflects Vietnam’s determination to join other ASEAN members in showing a new stature – independence, solidarity and development, and promotes the country’s political trust and cooperation with Saudi Arabia, thereby helping strengthen the ties between the two organisations of leading importance in Southeast Asia and the Persian Gulf, and enhance cooperation, political trust and cooperation between Vietnam and Saudi Arabia.
The trip is also a continuation of the implementation of the foreign policy identified at the 13th National Congress and the Party Central Committee Secretariat’s Directive No 25 on stepping up and elevating multilateral diplomacy by 2030.
It aims to demonstrate Vietnam’s strong commitment and responsible contributions to enhancing friendship and mutually beneficial cooperation, and building a peaceful and stable regional and international environment./.