In his remarks, Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Phan Van Mai said the two countries have obtained numerous achievements in their relations, from politics, investment, trade to education, development cooperation, and security - defense.

Economic cooperation is one of the highlights. Last year, Australia was the seventh largest trading partner of Vietnam, with bilateral trade topping USD 15.6 billion. Australia ranked 20th among 141 countries and territories investing in the Southeast Asian nation, with 583 projects worth nearly USD 2 billion. Many big enterprises of Vietnam such as Hoa Phat, Sovico, and VCB are also operating in Australia.

At the ceremony

On that basis, trade and investment links between Ho Chi Minh City and Australia are also thriving, he went on, elaborating that annual bilateral trade has surpassed USD 1.2 billion, and Australia now has 274 investment projects worth over USD 200 million in the Southern metropolis.

Ho Chi Minh City also has dynamic relations in trade, education - training, innovation, culture, tourism, and people-to-people exchange with such Australian states as Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, and the Northern Territory.

Expressing his gratitude to generations of the two countries’ leaders and people for their unceasing efforts to build up the bilateral ties, Mai expressed his belief that the dynamic growth of Ho Chi Minh City - Australia relations will greatly contribute to the sustainable development of the relationship between the two nations.

Addressing the event, Australian Ambassador to Vietnam Andrew Goledzinowski said that after five decades, the two countries have built a special friendship and partnership on the basis of mutual trust, paving the way for the establishment of the strategic partnership in 2018 and the commitment to upgrade the relationship to a comprehensive strategic partnership in the future.

As a trade and economic center and a hub for people-to-people links, Ho Chi Minh City plays a critically important role in the Australia - Vietnam relations. About 75% of Australia’s investment in Vietnam is poured into the Southern region, concentrating in Ho Chi Minh City and nearby provinces. The city has also recorded positive results in education cooperation, as seen in the presence of RMIT University and Western Sydney University, according to the diplomat.

The ambassador said he believed that with the strong connections between the two countries’ citizens and the two governments, the bilateral relations will develop even more to obtain numerous achievements in different fields such as innovation, climate change response, education - training, and defense - security. At the same time, Ho Chi Minh City will maintain its core role in the enhancement of those ties.

Source: VNA