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Activities mark Vietnam's National Day in Europe

 Vietnamese embassies and representative agencies around the world have held activities to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Vietnam's National Day (September 2).

In Switzerland, the Vietnamese Permanent Mission to the United Nations, World Trade Organisation (WTO) and other international organisations in Geneva held a ceremony to mark the special day.

Addressing the event, Ambassador Le Thi Tuyet Mai, head of the mission, reviewed the progress of Vietnam over the past 75 years to the goal of prosperious people, strong nation, democracy, equality and civilisation.

She noted that Vietnam has been maintaining high economic growth, improving people’s living conditions, ensuring socio-political stability and defence-security, and completing legal institutions, while expanding external relations and making contributions to regional peace and cooperation.

Mai said that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on August 27 lauded Vietnam’s contributions since the country joined the UN in 1977, while clarifying that Vietnam has taken the lead in completing the UN development goals and showed active engagement in protecting peace and security.

She said that the mission has worked to realise Vietnam’s foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, diversification and multilateralisation, active and positive international integration and being friend and trust-worthy partner and responsible member of the international community. The mission has also implemented the policy of promoting cooperation with countries on the foundation of respecting each other’s independence, sovereignty as well as equality, mutual interest, and the settlement of differences through peaceful measures in line with international law, Mai stated.

In the Czech Republic, the Vietnamese Embassy in Prague held a ceremony to mark the 75th National Day, which drew the participation of Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis, Deputy Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Republic’s Parliament Vojtech Filip, Deputy Foreign Minister Martin Tlapa, and other officials of the host country, as well as the ambassadors of ASEAN countries in the Czech Republic and the Vietnamese community in the country.

Addressing the event, Deputy Ambassador Tran Thanh Huong said that Vietnam has risen from a war-torn country to a middle-income nation, with GDP growth staying at 6-7 percent and the growth rate in 2019 was eight times higher than that in 1986.

Vietnam is now one of the fastest growing economies in Southeast Asia. In 2020, despite a wide range of difficulties resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic, Vietnam has worked to complete the double target of preventing the spread of the pandemic and maintan economic growth. The country’s GDP growth is projected at 3-4 percent in 2020 and the economy is forecast to recover in 2021. 

The EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), which took effect from August 1, 2020, is expected to help promote economic ties between Vietnam and the EU and the Czech Republic in particular, she said.

The 100-million-strong market of Vietnam is a favourable destination for Czech firms, the diplomat added.

She also highlighted the traditional friendship between Vietnam and the Czech Republic, stressing that Vietnam highly valued  the Czech Republic's support to its national construction and defence. The bilateral relationship have become deeper with regular visits by leaders of both sides, she said, adding that Vietnam expects the visit by Prime Minister Andrej Babis this year on the occasion of the 70th founding anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties.

For his part, PM Andrej Babis showed his pleasure at the development of the bilateral partnership in various fields such as defence, security, trade, culture, as well as cooperation in opening a direct air route between Prague and Hanoi, which will make his visit to Vietnam easier.

He highly valued coordination between the Czech Republic and Vietnam when the COVID-19 pandemic broke out, while lauding the Vietnamese side’s efforts to repatriate its citizens.

The PM also hailed the endeavours of the Vietnamese community in the European country in fighting the pandemic through providing financial support to hospitals and medical staff.

He held that the EVFTA will help strengthen trade between the Czech Republic and Vietnam.

Speaking to Vietnamese correspondents in the Czech Republic, Deputy Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Republic’s Parliament Vojtech Filip said that the Czech Republic-Vietnam long-lasting strategic partnership has expanded despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. He held that not only the leaders of both sides but the two business communities have paid attention to the development of bilateral ties, which enables both countries to overcome consequences caused by the pandemic.

Participants at the event had a chance to enjoy Vietnamese dishes and photos on Vietnam and the Vietnam-Czech relations.

Also on September 1, the Vietnamese Embassy in Belgium-Luxembourg and the Vietnamese mission to the EU held a get-together to mark Vietnam's National Day.

Speaking at the event, Ambassador Vu Anh Minh said that the National Day of Vietnam is celebrated in an unprecedented circumstance when the COVID-19 pandemic is causing great losses in health, human lives and socio-economy as well as international relations.

In this context, Vietnam is well performing the role as ASEAN Chair, President of the 41st General Assembly of AIPA and non-permanent member of the UN Security Council, he said, adding that the country has put forth important initiatives.

On the occasion, the website of the Vietnamese Trade Office in Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU made it debut at, aiming to better support businesses of both sides.

The same day, representatives of the Vietnamese community in the UK gathered in London for National Day celebrations.

Addressing the event, Vietnamese Ambassador to the UK Tran Ngoc An reviewed socio-economic achievements of Vietnam over the years as well as the country’s contributions to peace and cooperation in the region and the world.

An lauded the progress of the Vietnam-UK ties, expressing belief that the partnership will continue to thrive in the future./