President of Argentina's Vietnam visit deepens bilateral strategic partnership

President of Argentina Mauricio Macri’s state visit to Vietnam has demonstrated the importance of Vietnam in Argentina’s foreign policy towards Asia in general and Southeast Asia in particular; especially after Argentina signed the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) last August.
The visit from February 19-21 has deepened the bilateral strategic partnership and boosted investment and trade cooperation between the two countries.

This was the first visit to Vietnam by Mauricio Macri as President of Argentina. It was an important milestone in the bilateral relationship, especially after the two countries celebrated the 45th anniversary of their diplomatic ties last year.

In recent years, the relations between Vietnam and Argentina have been reinforced and developed, especially in trade. Vietnam is one of Argentina’s leading trade partners in Asia.

The welcoming ceremony for the President of Argentina was held in Hanoi on February 20.
In the photo: Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong and President Mauricio Macri
review the honor guard of the Vietnam People’s Army. Photo: Tri Dung/VNA

The two leaders at the welcoming ceremony. Photo: Lam Khanh/VNA

The two leaders hold talks. Photo: Photo: Lam Khanh/VNA

According to Vietnamese Ambassador to Argentina Dang Xuan Dung, the comprehensive partnership has sustained the upward trend in spite of certain impact of external factors and Argentina’s situation.

Aside from frequent mutual visits at all levels between their parties, governments and parliaments, important bilateral mechanisms such as the intergovernmental committee and the political consultation at the deputy foreign ministerial level have been maintained and improved.

The two sides have supported and cooperated with each other effectively at multilateral forums like the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the Forum for East Asia-Latin America Cooperation (FEALAC), and the South-South Cooperation within the UN’s framework.

Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong and President of Argentina Mauricio Macri witnessed the signing of cooperation documents between the two nations, including a cultural exchange program for 2019-2023  between Vietnam’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Technology of Argentina; an action program on technical cooperation in verifying martyrs’ remains between the Vietnamese Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs and the Argentine Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship; and a cooperation agreement between the Voice of Vietnam and Argentina’s Federal System of Public Media and Content.
Economic-trade ties are also a highlight in the countries’ connections. Two-way trade steadily grew to 3.03 US billion dollars in 2017 from 3 billion US dollars in 2016, nearly 2.5 billion US dollars in 2015, 1.92 billion US dollars in 2014 and 1.4 billion US dollars in 2013. Last year the bilateral trade stayed at 2.9 billion US dollars - the highest of Argentina with a Southeast Asian nation. 

Vietnam ranks second in Asia and fifth in the world among Argentina’s markets. Argentina, in turn, is the second biggest market of Vietnam in Latin America. The two sides have been working actively to raise bilateral trade to 5 billion US dollars. Argentina has four investment projects in Vietnam, ranking 106th among 129 countries and territories investing in Vietnam.

Vietnam exports to Argentina garments and textiles, footwear, rubber, electric and electronic products, steam boilers, mechanical equipment, bike and motorbike spare parts, suitcases, bags and handicraft. It imports from Argentina soybean, wheat, animal byproducts, medicines, chemicals, fibers, garment auxiliaries, machinery, cars and accessories, milk and dairy products, cowhide, wood, plastics, steel and wine.

The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Argentina Chamber of Commerce and Services have inked a cooperation agreement to boost bilateral trade.

The two leaders witness the signing of a cultural exchange program for 2019-2023 between Vietnam’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Technology of Argentina. Photo: Tri Dung/VNA

They also witness the signing of a cooperation deal between Voice of Vietnam
and Argentina's Federal System of Public Media and Content. Photo: Tri Dung/VNA

Party General Secretary and President Nguyen Phu Trong and his spouse host a banquet
to welcome President of Argentina Mauricio Macri and his spouse.
In the photo: The two leaders and their spouses pose for a photo with artists at the banquet. Photo: Doan Tan/VNA

The Argentinian guests play a Vietnamese musical instrument. Photo: Doan Tan/VNA

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc receives the Argentinian guest. Photo: Thong Nhat/VNA

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has a meeting with President Mauricio Macri. Photo: Thong Nhat/VNA

National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan meets with President Mauricio Macri. Photo: Trong Duc/VNA

The wives of the two leaders pose with Vietnamese children. Photo:  Lam Khanh/VNA

President of Argentina Mauricio Macri and his spouse pay tribute to late President Ho Chi Minh at his mausoleum.
Photo: Doan Tan /VNA

The President of Argentina and Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam attend the Vietnam – Argentina Business Forum.
Photo: Doan Tan/VNA 

The two sides have also agreed to boost cooperation in culture, tourism, sports, education and teaching of Spanish. Bilateral cooperation in education, culture and tourism has developed rapidly through exchanges between the universities and art troupes of the two countries. Every year, Vietnam welcomes about 10,000 visitors from Argentina. 

The Vietnamese Culture and Tourism Week opened in Buenos Aires, Argentina on October 25 2018 as one of the activities to celebrate of the 45th anniversary of Vietnam-Argentina diplomatic relations.