A recent official visit of communist party general secretary Nong Duc Manh was assessed to be a great event, bringing “traditional friendship, comprehensive, prolonged, reliable cooperation in the 21st century” relation between Vietnam and France to a new level.
Presently, France is the biggest trade, economic and official development assistance (ODA) partner among Western, Northern European countries of Vietnam.
According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, France has valid 147 foreign direct investment projects in Vietnam with total approved capital of more than US$2.155 billion, ranking 7 among 10 top foreign investors in Vietnam of which more than US$1.04 billion was actualised.
The two-way trade turnover last year reached more than US$1.17 billion of which Vietnam export to France attained nearly US$560 million. France continuously committed to boost ODA to Vietnam with an increasing ODA amount year-on-year. Particularly, France in 2001 provided Vietnam 95 million euro of ODA and this figure last year was 334 million. Reportedly, Vietnam now becomes the fourth biggest donor in Vietnam.
Vietnam last year received more than 104,000 French visitors, a rise of some 20% compared to last year. In January-May period alone, Vietnam welcomed nearly 57,100 French visitors, a year-on-year increase of 39.4%.