State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and a high-ranking delegation left Hanoi today [November 16] for Thailand to attend the 29th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Meeting to be held in Bangkok from November 16-19 at the invitation of Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.
|State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and his wife at Noi Bai International Airport on November 16, before leaving for an official visit to Thailand and attending the 29th APEC Summit. Photo: TTXVN|
This would be Phuc’s first visit to Thailand as Vietnam’s President and the first of a Vietnamese leader to the neighboring country since the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Ha Kim Ngoc.
Phuc is the first foreign leader to visit Thailand before the 29th APEC meeting.
According to Ngoc, both country leaders will exchange views on strengthening investment, trade, and economic partnership and explore cooperation opportunities in new fields such as digital economy, digitalization, and green growth.
The Vietnam-Thailand strategic partnership has made significant progress over the years, despite the severe impacts of Covid-19.
Data from the Ministry of Industry and Trade revealed Thailand is Vietnam's largest trading partner among ASEAN members and the ninth-largest investor out of 139 countries and territories in Vietnam.
In 2021, bilateral trade turnover rose by 18% year-on-year to US$18.8 billion. In the first nine months of 2022, the figure reached US$16.1 billion, up 17.2 % on-year.
During the first six months of 2022, Vietnam welcomed nearly 40,000 tourists from Thailand, and over 130,000 Vietnamese tourists came to Thailand during the period. Currently, 18 localities in Vietnam have cooperation agreements with their Thai counterparts.
The 29th APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting will occur from November 14-19.
Established in 1989, APEC is a regional economic forum aimed at harnessing the growing interdependence of the Asia-Pacific.
Vietnam joined the forum in 1998 and hosted the summit twice, in 2006 and 2017.
Thailand will host APEC 2022 under the theme "Open. Connect. Balance." This implies that the country's priorities for APEC are to be open to all opportunities, connected in all dimensions, and balanced in all aspects.