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On the occasion of the 78th Anniversary of the National Day of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam and the 30th Anniversary of Diplomatic Relations between the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam and the State of Israel , the Ambassador Ly Duc Trung and Madame Pham Minh Trang held a reception on Sunday 23 July at the King David Tower sea hall , in Tel Aviv. 
At the entrance we saw a display of a large number of products from Vietnam and the place was adorned with flags and flowers in tricolors Vietnam’s national colors.
Upon entering beautiful ladies dressed in national attire called our attention, especially 2 dressed one with the flag of Viet Nam and the other of Israel, dresses made by Mrs Lili Huang Thu Nguyen 
 Honorary guests were H.E. Mr.Tran Luu Quang, Deputy Prime Minister of Viet Nam ,Minister Ofir Akunis, Minister of Science and Technology and Mr. Yaron Mayer , Ambassador of Israel to Vietnam
The formal part of the evening opened with theVietnam and Hatikva, the Israeli national anthem.
His Excellency Ambassador Ly Duc Trung welcomed his guests in a moving address: " In August 1945, under the leadership of the Communist Party of Viet Nam headed by President Ho Chi Minh, the Vietnamese people successfully launched an uprising to seize power and declared Independence on 2 September. The newly founded Viet Nam had  to go through another 30-year-long struggle for national liberation and reunification. In 1975, southern Viet Nam liberated and the country reunified. Since then, the unified Viet Nam has ushered into a new era of peace, unification and national construction. In the first ten years of post-war period, many socio-economic targets could not be achieved due to both internal and external reasons. Viet Nam’s economy fell into crisis and stagnation. People’s lives were difficult. Therefore, at the 6th Congress of the Communist Party in 1986, Doi Moi (or renovation) policy was launched with focus on economic reforms. This marked an important milestone in Viet Nam’s new stage of development. From then on, Viet Nam, from a food importer, has become the second largest rice and coffee exporter in the world. Viet Nam also exports various other commodities with well-known brands.
 The economy has attained high growth rate during the late 20th century and early decades of the 21st century. People’s lives have been significantly improved and Vietnamese are ready to embark on the cause of national construction towards the goals of an affluent people, prosperous nation, and democratic, equitable and advanced society.
Thanks to the consistent foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, peace, friendship, cooperation and development, diversification and multilateralization of international relations, active international integration, and being a friend, a reliable partner and a responsible member of the international community together with upholding the bamboo diplomacy, today, Viet Nam is considered a success story. The economy has proven resilient through different crises. As Viet Nam has grown bolder in its development aspirations, aiming to become a developed and high-income country by 2045.
Let me share a thought that a few mega trends are shaping the future of Viet Nam. The country’s population is now 100 million and rapidly aging while global trade is declining. Environmental degradation, climate change, and the rise of automation are growing. The Covid-19 crisis presented unprecedented challenges that might undermine progress towards development. To rise to challenges, Viet Nam needs to dramatically improve its performance to implement policies particularly in finance, environment, digital transformation, social protection and infratructure where countries and partners around the world including Israel can give a helping hand.
Since Viet Nam and Israel established diplomatic relations on 12 July 1993, the friendly cooperation between the two countries has grown increasingly close in all fields. The past thirty years have witnessed exchanges of visits between leaders of the two countries during which frameworks for cooperation established to facilitate bilateral cooperation in all fields including political, economic, trade, investment, high-tech, smart agriculture and others. In addition, Israel has supported Viet Nam in human resource training through short courses and agriculture internship programs as well as sending experts and technicians to various cities and provinces in Viet Nam to exchange experience and knowledge and provide instructions of effective working methods and utilization of advanced machinery.
On the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations, we are here to warmly congratulate the two States, Governments and Peoples for the new milestones in the bilateral relationship, including the completion of Viet Nam - Israel Free Trade Agreement (VIFTA) which will help increase two-way trade volume, tourism and people-to-people exchange, thus creating more business opportunities in economic and investment cooperation. It is our hope that Viet Nam and Israel will continue developing and strengthening respective international status. And we have a strong belief that by working together, the two countries can achieve even greater success in all fields of cooperation.
As the Ambassador of Viet Nam to Israel, I am committed to strengthening the relationship between our countries even further. I will work tirelessly with the two States, Governments and Peoples to continue building upon the achievements of the past thirty years, in the interest of our people, and for peace, stability, and prosperity of the two regions and the world. With that, in the solemn astmosphere of today, I would like to wish leaders of Viet Nam and Israel good health, friendship and cooperation between Viet Nam and Israel ever grown and greater prosperity to our peoples. And all the best wishes to all distinguished guests present here tonight. Thank you very much! Toda raba."
Minister Ofir Akunis, Israel’s Minister of Science and Technology congratulated on behalf of the State of Israel said: " In 1993, Israel and Vietnam established diplomatic relations. Over the 30(thirty) years since then, the relations have steadily flourished, especially over the last decade. Today, I am honored and pleased to say that the relations between our two countries are stronger than ever!

We enjoy close cooperation in many areas, such as agriculture and medicine - and a rich variety of initiatives exist in the field of education, innovation and start-ups. Many Vietnamese students’ study in Israel, and we hope to see more of them.
As Minister of Innovation, Science and Technology, I am committed to accelerate joint projects on innovative research, startup ecosystem, and technology transfer.
Our economic ties have also grown tighter over the years. During this significant visit we will sign the Free Trade Agreement (FTA), marking a strategically important milestone in promoting trade between the countries.
I congratulate Vietnam on being the first South-east Asian country to sign such an agreement with Israel, and I hope it will encourage more ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) countries to follow.
I am certain that the momentum developed over the past years will only continue to grow and I look forward to setting new goals for expanding and deepening the partnership between our countries.
Personally, I'm very proud to be a part of the political movement led by the one of greatest leader of Israel- Menachem Begin, who agreed to accept and grant Israeli citizenship to a group of Vietnamese refugees in 1977.
Your Excellency, on behalf of the Government of the State of Israel and the Israeli people, I would like to warmly congratulate the Government and People of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam on this festive occasion. May Vietnam continue to enjoy peace, security and economic prosperity and may the bonds between our two nations continue to blossom in the years ahead.

 Thank you - Xin cam on.  לחיים"

 The speeches of the Ambassador and Minister were followed by some words of Barak Cohen - B·EV Motors Co-CEO , whose Vietnamese electric cars were on display at the hotel entrance

Following the speeches, the Ambassador  Ly Duc Trung, Mr. Tran Luu Quang, Deputy Prime Minister of Viet Nam, Minister Akunis and  Mr. Yaron Mayer ,Ambassador of Israel to Vietnam raised a toast to the future and wellbeing of both nations.
Among the many distinguished guests : Adv. Anat Bernstein - Reich Israel - Asia Chamber of Commerce President ; Honorary Consul of Vietnam Mr Yigal Ahouvi Businessman with his wife the famous Modeling, acting, TV hosting Galit Gutman; Yona Bartal, representative of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation; Dan Catarivas, President of the Israeli Federation of Bi-National Chambers of Commerce and Industry; Barak Cohen & Niv Oron - B·EV Motors Co-CEO and Founders ;Samuel Shevach - CEO - Global security Shevach; and a numerous ambassadors and diplomats of foreign countries; representatives of the Israeli army and attachés of various embassies; as well as delegates of the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, representatives of the Chamber of Commerce and commercial sectors.
 A rich buffet dinner, in grand style and with some typical Vietnamese dishes, was offered to the guests.
The evening entertainment was provided by beautiful vietnameses and Israeli singers brought the celebrations to a fitting end.
Today (Tuesday, 25 July 2023), two days later ,in the presence of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Vietnamese Deputy Premier Tran Luu Quang, , at the Prime Minister's Office in Jerusalem, Economy and Industry Minister Nir Barkat and Vietnamese Trade and Industry Minister Nguyen Hong Dien signed a free trade agreement between the State of Israel and Vietnam. Vietnam is the second East Asian country with which Israel has a free trade agreement (after the Republic of Korea) and the first from the ASEAN bloc.

The agreement is expected to lead to the reduction of reciprocal customs duties on both imported and exported products, alongside an improvement and easing in trade in a range of additional areas. The agreement will provide a competitive advantage and ease activity for Israeli exporters in the developing and growing Vietnamese market, thereby strengthening Israeli exports and increasing growth in the economy.

Diplomacy.co.il offers congratulations to the Vietnam Government, Embassy and people on its National Day, and 30 years of Diplomatic Relations and wish best wishes for success and strong bilateral relations between the nations
 Photos by Silvia G. Golan
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