President Joe Biden to visit Vietnam in September

By Nhu Tam   August 28, 2023 | 09:26 pm PT
President Joe Biden to visit Vietnam in September
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks at the White House on Aug. 28, 2023. Photo by AFP
U.S. President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit Vietnam on Sept. 10 and 11 upon the invitation of General Party Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong.

Vietnam's Foreign Affairs Ministry spokeswoman Pham Thu Hang confirmed the visit schedule in a statement Tuesday, saying that: "We believe visits by leaders of the two countries will deepen Vietnam and U.S.'s relations, helping the relations grow stably, substantially and in the long term in all fields, contributing to maintaining peace, stability, cooperation and development in the region and the world."

The visit will be the first by President Biden since assuming office in early 2021, and will happen as the countries celebrate 10 years of Comprehensive Partnership.

The White House earlier said in a statement that Biden will meet with Vietnam's Communist Party leader Trong and other top Vietnamese leaders in Hanoi on Sept. 10 before traveling to Alaska to commemorate the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the United States.

"While in Hanoi, President Biden will meet with General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong and other key leaders to discuss ways to further deepen cooperation between the United States and Vietnam. The leaders will explore opportunities to promote the growth of a technology-focused and innovation-driven Vietnamese economy, expand our people-to-people ties through education exchanges and workforce development programs, combat climate change, and increase peace, prosperity, and stability in the region," said the statement by Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre.

Biden met PM Pham Minh Chinh in the White House in May 2022, when he said he's always had a lot of love for Vietnam and its people, and during his time as a U.S. senator, he and his late colleague John McCain had lobbied to bolster U.S. relations with Vietnam.

During his visit to Vietnam last April, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken emphasized the U.S.'s commitment to bolster cooperation with Vietnam in several fields, especially trade and investment, science and technology, education and training, and climate change response. The U.S. values its relations with Vietnam and wishes to bring the relations to new heights, he said.

Vietnam and the U.S., former war enemies, normalized relations in July 1995 upgraded their relationship to comprehensive partnership in July 2013.

The two countries' bilateral trade turnover reached over $123.86 billion in 2022, an 11% increase from 2021. The U.S. is also the largest export market and the second-largest commercial partner for Vietnam.

Direct foreign investments from the U.S. to Vietnam reached over $11 billion, accounting for over 1,200 projects, placing it at 11th place among all countries and territories that invest directly into Vietnam. There are around 30,000 Vietnamese students studying in the U.S., contributing $1 billion to the country's economy.

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