Deputy Foreign Minister: Economic diplomacy contributes actively to national development

WVR - On the occasion of 78th anniversary of establishing the diplomatic sector (August 28, 1945-2023), Standing Deputy Foreign Minister, Ministry's Head of Steering Committee of economic diplomacy, Nguyen Minh Vu had an article on the World and Vietnam Report on economic diplomacy works’ achievements and its contributions to socio-economic development for years.
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh attended and raised directing opinion the Conference to accelerating the implementation of economic diplomacy to serve the country's socio-economic development in the last 6 months of 2023. (Photo: WVR/Tuan Anh)
Economic diplomacy contributes actively to national development: Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh speaks the Conference to accelerating the implementation of economic diplomacy to serve the country's socio-economic development in the last 6 months of 2023. (Photo: WVR/Tuan Anh)

According to the Standing Deputy Foreign Minister, during the past 78 years since its establishment, the diplomatic sector has always accompanied the nation, served the Fatherland and the people. It has become an important and strategic front in the period of struggle for national defense and national reunification, and a pioneering force in establishing and expanding relations with countries, territories and international organizations, attracting external resources for development, enhancing international position, contributing to the creation and preserve a stable external environment for socio-economic development in the period of national construction, development and international integration.

As one of the four pillars of the sector, economic diplomacy is a connotation, a cross-cutting task and increasingly promoted in order to serve the most practical socio-economic development of the country.

Economic diplomacy along with the national development

Economic diplomacy has a long process of formation and development for more than half a century, accompanying the development of the country since its independence.

From the mid-1970s when the country was about to be unified, the diplomatic sector determined the need for a new direction that was economic diplomacy in order to serve the country's post-war recovery. The Economic Research Working Group of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was established, pioneered in finding out and researching development models and tendencies of the world economy and gave advice to the Party and Government in making economic development policies, overcoming difficulties such as fighting against inflation, solving debt problems, etc., boldly proposed innovative ideas, contributing to the start of the innovation cause of our country; actively expanding international relations, mobilizing resources to serve the country's reconstruction and making efforts to implement policies to break sieges and embargoes.

In the 1990s and especially since Vietnam joined the WTO in 2006, Ministry of Foreign Affairs has strived to mobilize resources for the country's economic development, helped open up potential export markets; mobilized FDI, ODA, promoted the image of a dynamic and innovative Vietnam, thereby contributing to important achievements in trade, investment, tourism, etc. in recent years.

Standing Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Minh Vu stated that the diplomacy sector has proactively and actively promoted Vietnam's process of integration and deep international economic integration; providing strategic advice on Vietnam's active participation and contribution and responsibility in multilateral economic cooperation mechanisms; supporting advocacy, negotiation, and signing of FTAs with various key partners, contributing to expanding the development space, making Vietnam an important link in regional and global economic network, strengthening and enhancing the country's international position.

Economic diplomacy actively implements the 13th Party Congress’s policy, effectively serving the national socio-economic development

The 13th National Party Congress has set out important guidelines and policy for foreign affairs works in general and economic diplomacy in particular. It affirmed "ensuring the utmost national interests" and clearly defined the position and pioneering role of diplomacy in "creating and maintaining a peaceful and stable environment, mobilizing external resources to develop the country, enhancing the national position and prestige". The Congress's resolutions also mentioned for the first time the orientation of "building economic diplomacy for development, taking people, localities and businesses as the center".

Thoroughly grasping and implementing the foreign policy of the 13th Party Congress, promoting the traditions of the diplomacy sector, in recent times, the work of economic diplomacy has been implemented drastically, comprehensively, and transformed and profoundly changed in quality and quantity, achieving many important and proud results, continuously making practical contributions to the national socio-economic development.

Vaccine diplomacy contributes to the successful implementation of the Vaccine Strategy, creating a basis for the country's socio-economic recovery and development.

The Standing Deputy Foreign Minister noted that In the context of the world and the country facing unprecedented challenges, especially the impact of the fourth COVID-19 pandemic, economic diplomacy has been actively and proactively implemented. In which, vaccine diplomacy is the brightest point, achieving results beyond expectations, making an important contribution to disease prevention and protection of people's health.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other ministries and branches of the Government's Working Group on vaccine diplomacy led by Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son advised the leaders to talk, contact, exchange and send letters to leaders of other countries, international organizations and vaccine manufacturers to call aid, supply vaccines, medical equipment, therapeutic drugs and technology transfer. As a result, from the first 117.6 thousand doses of vaccine in February 2021, by the end of 2021, Vietnam received over 192 million doses, exceeding the target of 150 million doses according to Resolution No. 21/NQ-CP of the Government.

Up to now, Vietnam has received more than 258 million doses, of which foreign aid has reached over 120 million doses, accounting for nearly 50%, saving the national budget more than 900 million USD, equivalent to nearly 23 trillion VND.

The vaccine diplomacy campaign is also a large-scale and unprecedented diplomatic campaign in history, contributing to the success of the Government's vaccine strategy, helping Vietnam from behind to move forward in vaccination, creating decisive basis and important opportunities for the country to switch to a strategy of safe and flexible adaptation to the pandemic and economic recovery.

Economic diplomacy promptly shifts focus from vaccine diplomacy to socio-economic recovery and development diplomacy, affirming people, localities and businesses at the center.

The world situation from the beginning of 2022 until now continues to evolve rapidly and complicatedly, deeply affecting economies with high openness like Vietnam. In that context, Vietnam maintained macro-economic stability, controlled inflation, and ensured major balances of the economy. In 2022, Vietnam achieved a record GDP growth of 8.02%, the highest increase in the past 12 years.

Thoroughly grasping the policy of the 13th Party Congress, the instructions of the General Secretary at the National Foreign Relations Conference and the Prime Minister at the 31st Diplomatic Conference, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has urgently concretized these important viewpoints and directions have into tasks in Directive No. 15-CT/TW dated August 10, 2022 of the Secretariats on economic diplomacy for the national development until 2030, Resolution No. 21/NQ-CP dated February 20, 2023 of the Government promulgating the Government's Action Plan for the period of 2022-2026 to implement Directive No. 15-CT/TW.

On that basis, economic diplomacy over the past time had a incisive change from thinking, comprehension to action in ministries, branches, localities and enterprises, really becoming a central task of the entire diplomatic sector and achieved many positive results.

Firstly, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has coordinated with ministries and branches to effectively organize foreign affairs activities, especially high-level foreign affairs, contributing to deepening economic relations with partners, taking full advantage of resources and maintain a favorable foreign affairs situation for national development.

In nearly 100 foreign affairs activities from the beginning of 2022 until now by key leaders, economic cooperation has become a central content, achieving specific and substantive results with many signed economic cooperation agreements. Vietnam has established breakthrough new cooperation frameworks such as Digital Economy Partnership, Green Economy Partnership with Singapore, New Generation ODA with Japan, Green Finance Strategic Partnership with Luxembourg, MOU Cooperation with WEF period 2023-2026, etc.

Secondly, the diplomacy sector actively contributes to promoting international economic integration and connectivity; actively mobilizes and attracts resources to serve new growth drivers, green financial sources, investment to serve energy conversion, high technology, etc.

Notably, Vietnam signed the Fair Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) with the G7 and European countries with an initial investment of 15.5 billion USD; successfully attracted green and high-tech investment projects such as the world's first $1.3 billion carbon-neutral factory project of Lego Group, the valuable R&D Center 220 million USD from Samsung Group, etc.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs actively promotes the implementation and supports the establishment of international economic cooperation and linkage frameworks, including 15 signed FTAs, signed FTAs with Israel and continues to promote the negotiation of FTAs with EFTA, UAE, Mercosur, etc.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Minh Hoan signed the Action Plan for period 2022 - 2026 on economic diplomacy to assist the development of Vietnamese Agriculture sector (Photo: Tuan Anh)
Economic diplomacy contributes actively to national development: Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Minh Hoan signed the Action Plan for period 2022 - 2026 on economic diplomacy to assist the development of Vietnamese Agriculture sector. (Photo: WVR/Tuan Anh)

Thirdly, to concretize the task of taking people, localities and businesses as the center of service and implementing the Prime Minister's instructions at four major conferences on economic diplomacy in 2022 and 2023, the diplomacy sector actively accompanies and supports industries, fields, localities and businesses.

As Vietnam expands economic cooperation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Vietnamese Representative Missions abroad supported for the recovery of the tourism industry as soon as the Government decides to reopen international tourism on March 15, 2022 and advises the Government to issue the favorable visa policies for international tourists; promote economic diplomatic briefings with sectors facing difficulties such as textiles and garments, leather and footwear, timber and forest products, fisheries, etc. to help associations and industries capture more information of markets and advise on orientations and solutions to remove immediate difficulties and expand export markets in the long term.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development signed and implemented the Action Plan to deploy economic diplomacy to contribute to promoting the development of the Agriculture sector in the period of 2023-2026, promoting new and breakthrough cooperation directions such as developing the Halal industry, tripartite agricultural cooperation, etc.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs organized more than 120 working delegations to localities, nearly 100 activities connecting international partners, overseas businesses with localities, supporting more than 250 international cooperation documents in 2022 and the first 8 months of 2023. Heads of Vietnamese Representative Missions abroad work with 9 ministries, branches, and over 100 associations and large Vietnamese businesses to understand the need for support to promote cooperation and overcome difficulties.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs promotes activities to update and inform Vietnamese localities, associations and businesses about new tendencies and regulations in international trade and investment affecting exports and attracting investment, strengthen market information, verify partners; actively support to protect the legitimate interests of Vietnamese enterprises in international trade disputes.

Fourthly, in the context of the complicated and unpredictable developments of the world economic situation, the research, advice and strategic forecasting for serving socio-economic management is particularly focused and promoted.

The Ministry continues to maintain and improve the quality of monthly world economic reports to serve regular Government meetings and provide reference to localities and businesses; promptly develop advisory reports to the Government, ministries, branches and localities on topical issues of the world economy, the region and emerging issues that have a direct impact on national economic development, and advise; recommend appropriate policies.

Deputy Foreign Minister: Economic diplomacy contributes actively to national development
Standing Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Minh Vu speaks at a conference on economic diplomacy.

Economic diplomacy continuously promotes its role as an important driving force for rapid and sustainable national development

As stated by the Standing Deputy Foreign Minister, in the context of the world economy with many difficulties and challenges, on the basis of closely following the directions of the Party and Government, especially the directions of the Prime Minister at the Conference to deploy the economic diplomacy works for the last 6 months of 2023 in July, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs focuses on promoting economic diplomacy in the following three major directions:

Firstly, continue to take advantage and bring into full play the potential and strength of the country, be more proactive and active in creating a situation conducive to the peace, security and development environment of the country; effectively take advantage of cooperation opportunities while ensuring the consolidation of strategic balance and harmonious development of relations with partners.

Secondly, prioritize promoting main growth drivers such as exports, investment, tourism, agriculture, etc. as well as new growth drivers in digital transformation, green development, circular economy, economic sharing, innovation, etc.

Thirdly, continues to drastically concretize the policy of building economic diplomacy to serve development, taking people, localities and businesses as the center for serving, improving the effectiveness of supporting industries, fields, localities, and businesses in international cooperation.

Outspreading the achieved results and the glorious 78-year tradition of the Diplomatic Service, in the highest determination, with the same urgency and determination as the vaccine diplomacy campaign, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and its Representative Missions abroad will further promote economic diplomacy to serve national development in the spirit of Directive No. 15-CT/TW of the Secretariats, Resolution No. 21/NQ-CP on the the Government's Executive Program for period 2022-2026 on implementing Directive No. 15-CT/TW and the motto of being creative, drastic, flexible, effective and taking advantage of all opportunities for national development to continue to make economic diplomacy become truly an important driving force for rapid and sustainable national development.

Ministers signed action plan on economic diplomacy promoting agricultural development
Vietnam contributes to intra-bloc economic cooperation at AEM-55
Review on external affairs from Aug. 14-20: Deputy PM's attendance at China-South Asia Expo, economic diplomacy for agriculture development
Economic diplomacy contributes to national development: Deputy FM
Mid-term review of external relations activities since 13th Party National Congress
(Translated by Gia Nguyen)