Viet Nam-France Decentralized Cooperation Conference opens in Ha Noi

April 14, 2023 8:44 AM GMT+7

VGP - The 12th Viet Nam-France Decentralized Cooperation Conference kicked off in Ha Noi on April 14.

Viet Nam-France Decentralized Cooperation Conference opens in Ha Noi - Ảnh 1.

Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang (2nd from R) and delegates visit a photo exhibition held on the sidelines of the conference, Ha Noi, April 14, 2023 - Photo: VGP/Hai Minh

Addressing the opening ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang said that France is the only country in the world where that Viet Nam has established local-to-local cooperation mechanism.

Viet Nam and France have become reliable partners since the two countries set up diplomatic ties 50 years ago, noted Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang.

The European country thus occupies an important position in Viet Nam's foreign policy, said Tran, expressing his belief that the ongoing event would boost bilateral ties and make Viet Nam-France relations. 

Dinh Tien Dung, Secretary of the Hanoi Party Committee, states that decentralized cooperation is a focal point of the activities that Vietnam and France have established.

Some 38 French municipalities have cooperated at all levels, with some 18 Vietnamese provinces and cities. Nearly 240 joint projects have been carried out in health care, education, water management and sanitation, historical preservation, and sustainable development.

"The conference is expected to strengthen ties between the two countries, enhance the role of local-to-local cooperation, and promote the development of each country and region," Dinh said.

According to experts, the Viet Nam-France decentralized cooperation still has room for further growth.

The French Development Agency (AFD) believes that local-to-local cooperation is very fruitful, said Anne de Soucy, Director of Partnerships at the AFD.

AFD Viet Nam is using all the tools to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially the Financing Facility for Local Authorities (FICOL), which makes it possible to co-finance projects carried out by French municipalities with their Vietnamese partners, Anne said.

There are now four active cooperation projects between France and Viet Nam co-financed by FICOL, including three initiatives in cooperation with Ha Noi. These projects now receive EUR1.3 million (US$1.44 million) in co-financing from AFD. The agency aims to increase its funding for joint projects to US$2.21 million.

In 2019-2022, Viet Nam received 670 French volunteers to work on local projects in education and training, language teaching, healthcare, and the environment./.  

Kim Anh