On the occasion of the new year of the Horse, Ambassador Camilla Mellander shares with Vietnam Investment Review about the Sweden – Vietnam bilateral relationship, as well as the position of Vietnam in the international arena.
“I am glad to see that Vietnam and the EU are in the final phase of negotiations of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA). The EU is already Vietnam’s largest export market and the trade flows will continue to increase with the FTA in place.
It has also been fascinating to observe Vietnam’s active contribution to building the ASEAN community also being the ASEAN coordinator with the EU.
In the context of Sweden – Vietnam bilateral relationship, 2013 witnessed several high level visits between Sweden and Vietnam, which have helped further boost political ties and trade relations. We have also seen increased interests from Swedish enterprises wanting to invest or do business here, reflected by numerous successful Swedish business delegations to Vietnam.
Looking ahead, I sincerely hope that Vietnam’s economy will grow even stronger in 2014 through more high-tech and value-added production. We believe that Sweden can make a meaningful contribution to Vietnam’s economic development by increased trade and technology transfer. Areas identified as beneficial for both sides include health care, clean tech, ICT and transport, all in line with Vietnam’s strategy for green growth and sustainability.
On the political arena, Vietnam in 2013 took the landmark decision to join UN Peacekeeping Operations and was elected a member to the UN Human Rights Council for 2014-2016. This raises Sweden’s and the international community’s expectations on Vietnam to demonstrate its commitments towards human rights on issues of key importance for Vietnam’s development such as freedom of expression, including on the Internet.
2014 will mark the 45th anniversary of Sweden –Vietnam diplomatic relations. This will be celebrated throughout the year and we are planning one event every month, not only on business related topics, but also on culture, music, film, art, design, education to be offered to the Vietnamese audience.
Source: Swedish Embassy in Vietnam