HM King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia make state visit to Vietnam early 2004

Sweden’s royal couple, King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia, will make an official visit to Vietnam early next year, according to Vietnam’s state owned news agency VNA.
     The surprise announcement was made by the Swedish Deputy Prime Minister, Ms Margareta Winberg during a visit 2 – 3 September to Sweden by her counterpart from Vietnam, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan.
     During the visit she also confirmed Sweden will continue to grant Vietnam top aid recipient status in Asia.
     Margareta Winberg said she was delighted at Vietnam’s socio-economic achievements and progress in external relations, and regional and international integration. She also underlined her country’s persistent support for Vietnam’s bid for an admission to the World Trade Organisation.
     Sweden will adopt its 2004-08 cooperation and development strategy for Vietnam late this year, the Swedish leader told her guest, adding that his Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia will pay an official visit to Vietnam early next year.
     This will mark a new milestone in the two countries’ relationship, stressed Ms Winberg.
     During the visit, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan paid a courtesy visit to Swedish Parliament Speaker Dr. Bjorn von Sydow. The host said that his parliament has received its members’ support for the strengthening of bilateral legislative ties and its government’s priority policy for Vietnam.
     While meeting the Minister for Trade and Industry Leif Pagrotsky, Deputy PM Khoan was assured of Sweden’s backing of the expansion of export markets for developing countries.
     Meanwhile, General Director of the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) Maria Norfalk promised to work harder with Vietnam’s charity agencies to carry out the 2004-08 Sweden-Vietnam cooperation strategy effectively and to look at Vietnam’s proposals for joint implementation of projects in the fields of rural telecommunications network, electricity, forestry and paper making.
     On 2 September did Deputy PM Khoan attend a business seminar organised by the Sweden-Vietnam Business Council and made visits to industry groups which have invested heavily in Vietnam, including Ericsson, ABB and Comviq, and did also paid tribute to the late Prime Minister Olof Palme.

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