50 Years of Vietnam – Australia Relations: Towards A New Height

Over time, Vietnam and Australia are getting closer and closer as the two countries enter the next chapter in the history of bilateral relations.

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RMIT University, the Victoria State Office of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), the Asian Institute for Social Studies in Australia, and Vietnam – Australia Policy Institute have organized a special event in Melbourne to look back on the past 50 years of Vietnam-Australia relations and seek opportunities and development trends for their relationship in the way ahead, VNA reported Tuesday.

Attending the event were Senator Tim Ayres, Australia’s Assistant Minister for Trade and Assistant Minister for Manufacturing; many senior Victorian government officials; Vietnamese Ambassador to Australia Nguyen Tat Thanh; Professor Alec Cameron, rector of RMIT University; and about 60 business leaders of the two countries.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Australia Nguyen Tat Thanh speaks at the event. Photo: VNA
Vietnamese Ambassador to Australia Nguyen Tat Thanh speaks at the event. Photo: VNA

Speaking at the event, Senator Tim Ayres, Australia’s Assistant Minister for Trade and Assistant Minister for Manufacturing, emphasised that Australia – Vietnam relations are increasingly developing as the two countries have a lot in common, especially sharing their commitment to building a stable, peaceful, resilient, and prosperous world, especially in Southeast Asia, a top priority of the Australian Government.

Tim affirmed that these common points pave the way for cooperation between the two countries. The joint implementation of concrete and tangible actions will help the two countries seize cooperation opportunities in various fields, including economy, trade and education.

He said that 350,000 Vietnamese Australians have contributing to creating a multicultural and modern Australia.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Australia Nguyen Tat Thanh said that many activities have been held in the past five decades, helping bring the two countries’ ties from friendship to partnership.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Australia Nguyen Tat Thanh and delegates at the event. Photo: VNA
Vietnamese Ambassador to Australia Nguyen Tat Thanh and delegates at the event. Photo: VNA

The ambassador affirmed that the bilateral relationship between Australia and Vietnam has achieved great results in all socio-economic fields. Bilateral trade has expanded 20% in the period 2018-2022, reaching a record of AUD 23.5 billion (USD 15.73 billion) in 2022, making Australia the 7th largest trading partner of Vietnam. For the first time, Vietnam became Australia’s 10th largest trading partner.

People-to-people exchanges have also been strengthened through the large number of Vietnamese Australians, who continue to play an important role in promoting friendship and understanding between the people of the two countries.

Australia has also emerged as one of the leading overseas education markets for Vietnamese students. Over the past 22 years, RMIT University – the first and largest foreign-owned university in the Southeast Asian country – has continued to support the Government of Vietnam with human resources improvement in order to help Vietnam become a high-middle-income country by 2030 and a high-income country by 2045.

Hannah Nguyen