Vietnamese State President Vo Van Thuong arrived in Hanoi at around 7:00 am on Sunday, concluding his four-day U.S. visit to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Week 2023 in San Francisco, California at the invitation of U.S. President Joe Biden.
This marks President Thuong’s first official U.S. visit, lasting from Tuesday to Friday, since he assumed power in March this year.
|Vietnamese State President Vo Van Thuong (L) shakes hands with a U.S. representative before returning to Vietnam. Photo: Vietnam News Agency|
Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son told the press that President Thuong’s U.S. trip wrapped up with great success and helped convey key messages about Vietnam’s stance on existing challenges facing the region and the world.
President Thuong and his high-ranking Vietnamese entourage made significant contributions to the success of the APEC Leaders’ Week 2023 hosted by the U.S..
The Vietnamese head of state put forward his ideas and proposals to cope with pressing issues of the global economy, especially the requirement for a new mindset which is inclusive, harmonious, and humane.
|Vietnamese State President Vo Van Thuong (R) attends a session of the APEC Leaders’ Week 2023 in San Francisco, November 17, 2023 (U.S. time). Photo: Vietnam News Agency|
He also made specific suggestions for APEC’s missions and tasks in the new period.
His ideas and proposals were highly valued by other leaders and the business community and were featured in the meeting’s document, helping open up new directions for APEC cooperation, Minister Son said.
In addition, President Thuong proposed that Vietnam act as the host of APEC in 2027.
This proposal affirmed Vietnam’s commitment toward multilateralism, the Asia-Pacific region in general, and the APEC forum in particular.
Minister Son added that all APEC members lauded Vietnam’s practical contributions to APEC over the past two decades and affirmed their trust in the nation’s chairmanship in 2027.
|Vietnamese State President Vo Van Thuong (C) sits next to his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden (R) at a session of the APEC Leaders’ Week 2023 in San Francisco, November 16, 2023 (U.S. time). Photo: Vietnam News Agency|
Aside from attending the APEC Leaders’ Week 2023, President Thuong met with his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden and a number of U.S. officials.
The top Vietnamese official also hosted receptions for some leading U.S. companies, attended events connecting businesses and localities between the two nations, as well as addressed a meeting with U.S. scholars.
His U.S. trip contributed to efforts to implement agreements signed between top U.S. and Vietnamese officials after both countries upgraded their bilateral ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership in September this year, Minister Son continued.
Through their meetings and bilateral activities in the U.S., both sides mostly discussed issues linked to economy, trade, and investment, with the U.S. soon granting the market economy status to Vietnam and considering science-technology and innovation as breakthrough cooperation fields.
Further, President Thuong’s speech on the global situation, Vietnam’s foreign policy, and the Vietnam-U.S. ties at the Council on Foreign Relations was highly valued by the U.S. side.
|Vietnamese State President Vo Van Thuong witnesses the signing of cooperation agreements reached by ministries, agencies, localities, and enterprises between Vietnam and the U.S. in San Francisco, November 15, 2023 (U.S. time). Photo: Vietnam News Agency|
U.S. businesses evinced their high interest in the Vietnamese market and affirmed their further investment in the Southeast Asian nation, especially in the fields of hi-tech, infrastructure development, and energy.
These American firms also pledged their support for Vietnam in training highly-skilled workforces to serve digital transformation and green transition.
Multiple cooperation agreements reached by ministries, agencies, localities, and enterprises between the two nations were exchanged in the presence of the top Vietnamese official.
|Vietnamese State President Vo Van Thuong delivers a speech at a meeting on the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) in San Francisco, November 16, 2023 (U.S. time). Photo: Vietnam News Agency|
In related news, as part of the APEC Leaders’ Week 2023, representatives from the U.S. and 13 other countries joined a meeting on the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF).
President Thuong on Thursday (U.S. time) gave a speech at the meeting, in which he put forward three major proposals for the IPEF.
He and other leaders of IPEF partner nations made a statement with the aim of developing the IPEF into an open, inclusive, flexible, long-term, and dynamic forum.
The IPEF is an economic initiative launched by the U.S. in May last year, with 14 participating member nations including the U.S., Australia, Brunei, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, and Vietnam.