The congress aimed to review its operation during the 2013-2018 period and put forth orientations and tasks for 2019-2024. It saw the attendance of 46 ambassadors, charge d'affaires, and representatives of foreign embassies in Vietnam, along with representatives of 30 international and non-governmental organizations in Vietnam, among others.

VUFO President, Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Nga speaking at the event

Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong, National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc sent baskets of flowers to the event.

Nga laid stress on new requirements of people-to-people diplomacy work as well as the VUFO – a core force in the mission.

She called for opinions to map out operational orientations for the union in order to make it stronger, contributing to the common goals of foreign relations that are maintaining a peaceful and stable environment, maximizing international support and resources in service of national construction and defense, improving Vietnam’s position in the world arena, and contributing to global people’s movements for peace, justice, democracy, and social progress.

Addressing the congress, Politburo member and permanent member of the Party Central Committee’s Secretariat Tran Quoc Vuong asked the union to work as a bridge between people-to-people diplomacy, and Party and State diplomacy in order to create combined strength in the front.

He said over the past tenure, the VUFO and its member organisations have made significant achievements, contributing to enhancing the friendship between Vietnamese people and those from countries worldwide, maintaining and consolidating a peaceful and stable environment, mobilizing external resources in service of national development and raising Vietnam’s position and prestige, as well as the world people’s struggle for peace, national independence, democracy, and social progress.

Pointing out limitations in their operation, Vuong suggested the union expand multilateralization and diversification, optimize the widespread support of the international community for national construction and defense, focus on maintaining and deepening the friendship between Vietnam and neighboring countries and others in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), key areas and some socio-economic centers to protect the country’s interests, prestige and image in the world arena.

It needs to improve the efficiency of cooperation with foreign non-governmental organizations and the quality of the mobilization of foreign non-governmental assistance, he said.

The official also highlighted the VUFO’s role in building and perfecting the State’s policies and laws on peace, solidarity, friendship, and people-to-people cooperation.

He expressed his belief that the union will well perform its core role in people-to-people diplomacy and reap greater achievements in 2020 when Vietnam serves as ASEAN Chair and non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.

On behalf of Party and State leaders, Vuong presented first-class Labor Order to the staff of the union in recognition of their outstanding performance.

The congress elected a 19-member Standing Committee of the union with Ambassador Nguyen Phuong Nga retaining her position as VUFO President for the new tenure of 2019-2024.

It was reported that with the VUFO’s efforts, up to 1.597 billion USD in assistance from non-governmental organizations was disbursed from 2014 to June 2019.

Vietnam has established relations with 1,171 organizations, of which 501 have regularly operated in the country.

Source: VNA