Canada Hosts Special Cultural Event to Commemorate Ties with Vietnam

The unique cultural event has captured the interest of numerous officials from the Canadian government and Parliament, diplomatic envoys from various countries in Ottawa, and a significant number of Vietnamese individuals throughout Canada, who have also gathered to commemorate this occasion.

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A special cultural event to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Vietnam-Canada diplomatic relations (1973-2023) was jointly organized by the Vietnamese Embassy in Canada, the Canada-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Group, and the Viet Nam Union of Friendship Organizations (VUFO), as reported by VNA.

In his opening remarks at the event, Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang highlighted the strong relationship between the two countries across various fields, including diplomacy, politics, investment, trade, cultural cooperation, and people-to-people exchanges.

He emphasized that the Vietnamese people have always regarded Canada as a trusted friend and a genuine partner in the Pacific region.

Congressman Shaun Chen, Co-chairman of the Canada-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Group (second from left), General Secretary of the Vietnam-Canada Friendship Association under the VUFO Nguyen Nang Khieu (second from right), and Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang (first from right). Photo: VNA
Congressman Shaun Chen, co-chairman of the Canada-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Group (second from left), General Secretary of the Vietnam-Canada Friendship Association Nguyen Nang Khieu (second from right), and Ambassador Pham Vinh Quang (first from right). Photo: VNA

Congressman Shaun Chen, co-chairman of the Canada-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Group, noted that Canada has a thriving Vietnamese community that has grown alongside the development of their relations over the past 50 years. He acknowledged that people-to-people exchanges are instrumental in fostering the bilateral ties between the two countries, especially as Canada implements the Indo-Pacific Strategy, in which its relationship with Vietnam plays an integral part.

Since establishing a Comprehensive Partnership in 2017, the relations between Vietnam and Canada have witnessed positive changes. Vietnam has emerged as Canada’s largest trading partner in ASEAN and a gateway for Canadian businesses to invest in Southeast Asia and the Asia-Pacific region.

Meanwhile, Canada has become Vietnam’s second-largest partner in the Americas. Two-way trade between the two countries reached USD seven billion in 2022 and is expected to reach USD 10 billion in 2023.

Congressman Shaun Chen, co-chairman of the Canada-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Group delivers his speech.
Congressman Shaun Chen, co-chairman of the Canada-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentary Group delivers his speech.

Nguyen Nang Khieu, General Secretary of the Vietnam-Canada Friendship Association under the VUFO, stated that people-to-people diplomacy is one of the three pillars of Vietnam’s diplomatic efforts in the new context. It contributes to enhancing bilateral relations between the two countries.

The Vietnamese community in Canada currently consists of approximately 300,000 people, and there are around 21,000 Vietnamese students studying in Canada. This community is considered an important resource and social foundation that contributes to the development of the bilateral relationship in various fields, particularly cultural cooperation and people-to-people exchanges.

Vietnamese expats, officials, and employees of the Vietnamese Embassy in Canada enjoyed performances of Vietnamese folk songs, filled with love for their homeland, presented by artists from the Vietnam Theater Artists Association and organizations under VUFO.

Former Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam David Devine and the embassy staff also participated in singing Quan Ho songs together with the artists.

Artist from the VUFO's delegation performs puppetry at the ceremony.
Artist from the VUFO’s delegation performs puppetry at the ceremony.
Art performance.
An art performance at the event.
Former Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam David Devine and the staff of the Vietnamese Embassy sing with Quan Ho artists.
Former Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam David Devine and the staff of the Vietnamese Embassy sing with Quan Ho artists.

Congressman Chen shared with VNA reporters that the event served as a reminder of the cultural diversity in Canada. He expressed pride in the fact that people from all over the world can come to Canada and call it home. Every individual has a story and a connection to certain places, and today, the Vietnamese community in Canada has gathered to celebrate their cultural traditions and history.

He believes that this diversity contributes to Canada’s unique character, as the nation values differences in history, culture, tradition, language, and cuisine. Witnessing these cultural activities was impressive, and he hopes that this event will further strengthen the relations between the two countries in the future.

Hannah Nguyen