Embarking on a cycling tour around Hanoi, immersing in the Tet atmosphere, witnessing the vibrant array of flowers, and observing the lively preparations of Vietnamese people for the Lunar New Year, particularly on Lunar New Year's Eve, encapsulate uniquely special moments in Vietnam for Swedish Ambassador Ann Måwe.
“I'm excitedly waiting for the Lunar New Year,” she told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.
The Tet days in Vietnam hold a particularly special place in the ambassador's heart, as the streets come alive with bustling activity and vibrant colors.
It is a time when people venture out to shop, harboring hopes for a prosperous and auspicious new year.
During this time, Ambassador Måwe often spends time cycling around Hanoi, or joining her Vietnamese friends to celebrate traditional Tet with their family.
|In this photo, Swedish Ambassador to Vietnam Ann Måwe wears 'ao dai' (Vietnam's traditional costume) and Vietnamese turban 'khan dong' while opening a loaf of 'banh chung,' a traditional Tet food in the northern region.
Having spent several years living in Vietnam, she fondly refers to the country as "a wonderful place," citing its delectable cuisine and captivating natural beauty among her favorite aspects.
Vietnamese people are always full of smiles, she added.
Having visited Vietnam in the past and now residing and working in the Southeast Asian country, she has had the privilege of witnessing the ongoing growth and transformation of Vietnam on a daily basis.
Three decades ago, in her perspective, Vietnam was characterized as a less affluent nation where people faced deprivation in their lives.
However, over the span of 30 years, Vietnam has undergone a remarkable transformation into a different country -- markedly more developed and prosperous.
Millions of people have successfully escaped poverty during this transformative period.
|Swedish Ambassador to Vietnam Ann Måwe gifts helmets to children in Hoi An City, Quang Nam Province, central Vietnam in 2023. Photo: B.D. / Tuoi Tre
Måwe holds a strong belief in Vietnam's success, attributing it to the resilience and vitality of its people, particularly the presence of a young and energetic generation.
"I sense that within each Vietnamese individual resides immense inner strength, resilience, and, notably, a profound sense of confidence and optimism regarding the future,” she said.
“They always look forward.”
|In this photo, Swedish Ambassador to Vietnam Ann Mawe is seen riding a scooter.
Throughout her tenure, the ambassador committed to facilitating the exchange of information about the investment climate in Vietnam for businesses in Sweden and vice versa, as well as disseminating information about Sweden to the Vietnamese community.
“Recently, I have noticed that the Vietnamese government has paid great attention to the environment and gender equality, two areas that need more focus to ensure sustainable development,” she said.
In 2024, Vietnam and Sweden will celebrate 55 years of diplomatic relations.