Ninth Vietnam – Japan Festival Kicks Off in Ho Chi Minh City

Held by the Ho Chi Minh City administration in conjunction with some Japanese agencies, the two-day event takes place at September 23 Park in District 1.

Attending the opening ceremony were former Vietnamese State President Truong Tan Sang, Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang, Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Phan Van Mai, and Permanent Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Minh Vu.

Ambassador of Japan to Vietnam Yamada Takio, Japanese Consul General in the city Ono Masuo, and many other Japanese officials also took part in the event.

At the beginning of the ceremony, participants observed the image of Japanese Prime Minister Kishida in a video projected on the screens and listened to his pre-recorded speech.

In his message, he expressed his genuine delight in extending warm congratulations to the festival.

The Prime Minister said many restaurants and stores in Japan sell popular Vietnamese food items, and on the other hand, young Vietnamese especially love Japanese cuisine and culture.

Kishida expressed his pleasure at witnessing the increasing closeness between the two countries, noting that he has personally fostered close relationships with many Vietnamese people.

He expected that this year’s annual festival will contribute to further promoting the connections and exchanges between the two nations.

Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Tran Luu Quang speaks at the ninth Vietnam – Japan Festival, which kicked off in Ho Chi Minh City on March 9, 2024. Photo: Quang Dinh / Tuoi Tre

In his address to the ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister Quang highlighted that the festival would provide participants with a profound experience of the traditional cultural traits of both countries.

He asserted that the event aims to enhance friendship and mutual understanding between the two peoples.

“The festival will serve as a bridge of friendship to deepen the sincere attachment and mutual trust between the two nations, contributing to the enhancement of the comprehensive strategic partnership,” Quang remarked.

“This partnership extends beyond economic, trade, and labor cooperation, including new fields such as hi-tech, digital transformation, and the green economy.”

Permanent Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Vu stated that the annual festival is not just a vibrant cultural exchange event; it also serves as a crucial forum contributing to strengthening economic, trade, and investment cooperation between the two countries.

Such collaboration has been elevated to a comprehensive strategic partnership, officially established in late November 2023.

Vietnamese and Japanese officials pose for a photo at a booth promoting Vietnam’s tourism at the ninth Vietnam-Japan Festival, which commenced in Ho Chi Minh City on March 9, 2024. Photo: Ngoc Duc / Tuoi Tre

In addition to the numerous booths showcasing food, consumer goods, tourism products, local specialties, and healthcare items from both countries, festival-goers can also indulge in Japan’s tea ceremonies, partake in Japanese folk games, and engage in various other captivating activities.

As part of the festival, some programs, seminars, and talks will be conducted to promote trade, cuisine, and tourism activities between Vietnam and Japan.

There will be music and dance shows performed by Japanese and Vietnamese artists and singers during the event.