At the invitation of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and his spouse, Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide and his spouse will visit Vietnam on October 18 – 20.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang on October 15 said that this was the second time in a row that a Japanese Prime Minister chose Vietnam as the first country to visit after taking office.

In 2013, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also chose Vietnam as the first point on his trip right after taking office. The spokesperson said Mr. Suga’s choice is a clear testament to the good, strong and substantive development in many areas of the strategic partnership between the two countries.

The Japanese Prime Minister’s visit aims to strengthening relations with Vietnam, to exchanging measures to promote cooperation in all fields and to exchanging views on regional and international issues of mutual interest. Mr. Suga is scheduled to hold talks with Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and pay courtesy to Vietnam’s senior leaders.

Mr. Suga’s visit took place in the context of thriving Vietnam-Japan relationships, and Japan continues to be Vietnam’s leading economic partner. Japan is the leading ODA provider to Vietnam, the second largest investor and the fourth largest trading partner of Vietnam.

Regarding trade, the total import and export turnover in the first 9 months of 2020 reached $28.6 billion, with imports of $14.6 billion (up 3.1% over the same period of 2019) and exports $14 billion.

Japan has 4,595 valid FDI projects in Vietnam with a total registered investment capital of $59.87 billion, ranking 2nd among 136 countries and territories investing in Vietnam.

In 2019, the number of Japanese tourists to Vietnam reached 951,962 people, ranked third, up 15.2% over the same period last year.

Since the beginning of 2020, the Covid-19 epidemic has affected the extensive strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan in many fields. However, the two countries still maintain exchanges of high-level and various levels in many forms.

This article was originally published in VNA