French Saintes City Wishes to Promote Cooperation with Vietnam

Vietnamese Ambassador to France Dinh Toan Thang recently paid a working visit to Saintes, a city in southwestern France, to promote cooperation between the city and Vietnamese localities and attended the Vietnamese Culture Day, VNA reported.

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At the meeting with Mr. Bruno Drapron, Mayor of Saintes City, representatives of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region, the Farmers' Union and Saintes Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the delegation and the city government discussed the potential for cooperation and connection. between Vietnam and Vietnamese localities with Saintes and its vicinity.
At the meeting with Bruno Drapron, Mayor of Saintes, representatives of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine Region, the Farmers’ Union and Saintes Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the delegation and the city government discussed the potential for cooperation and connection between Vietnam and Vietnamese localities with Saintes and its vicinity.

At a meeting with Saintes Mayor Bruno Drapron, the city’s department of commerce and trade, representatives from Nouvelle-Aquitaine region and the local farmers’ association, Ambassador Dinh Toan Thang highlighted cooperation potentials between the two countries’ localities in various fields such as agriculture, sustainable tourism development, railway, seaport and technical infrastructure.

Saintes advocates the development of application of advanced technologies and production processes in agriculture to ensure environmental standards, biodiversity protection, and inclusiveness and sustainability. In addition to strengths in agriculture including livestock and cognac production, Saintes also has advantages in veterinary medicine, technology for agriculture and sustainable tourism.

For his part, the mayor said that the city will study how to transfer skills and technology to Vietnamese partners and acquire experiences and technique from the Vietnamese side, as well as work together with the Vietnamese side to design strengthen cooperation between the localities of the two countries in the time ahead.

The ambassador encouraged the city’s economic and cultural partners to continue promoting cooperation and, in the immediate future, to participate in the 12th conference on cooperation between Vietnamese and French localities in Hanoi from April 13-15.

Visitng Chadignac vocational school.
Visitng Chadignac vocational school, located in Agrocampus, a collection of agricultural vocational schools with Saintes’ strengths in floriculture, horticulture and cognac production.

During his trip, the ambassador visited Chadignac vocational school which has cooperated with Vietnam’s Thang Long Gifted school in Da Lat (the Central Highlands province of Lam Dong) in French language teaching, the first step towards bigger projects.

Here, the delegation witnessed the model of vocational guidance and vocational training for students in order to arouse students’ interest in promoting modern and sustainable agricultural production, ensuring environmental and technological production process.

The ambassador and his entourage also attended a display and show of Vietnamese ethnic minority costumes as part of the Vietnamese Cultural Day in Saintes.

Show of Vietnamese ethnic minority costumes as part of the Vietnamese Cultural Day in Saintes.
Show of Vietnamese ethnic minority costumes as part of the Vietnamese Cultural Day in Saintes.
the fashion show of Vietnamese ethnic minorities organized by the Vietnam 17 Association at the City Multimedia Library. Source: NDO
The fashion show of Vietnamese ethnic minorities organised by the Vietnam 17 Association at the City Multimedia Library. Source: NDO

A collection of ethnic minority costumes by Alain Dussarps, Vice President of the Vietnam-France Friendship Association (AAFV), collected through many decades of cooperation trips to Vietnam and contributed to the Vietnam 17 Association exhibits for one month in Saintes.

Vietnam Culture Day in Saintes was opened from January 21 and will last until June 2023 as a series of cultural events for the first time held on a large scale with many special activities such as film screenings, seminars on Vietnam’s tourism and economy, performances of ethnic musical instruments, fashion shows, displays of Vietnamese ethnic minority costumes, and cuisine introduction.

During the Lunar New Year, Vietnam 17 Association performed a lion dance on the central streets of the city, attracting a large audience to explore. Especially, with the coordination and support of the city, students at schools in the city enjoyed Vietnamese dishes for a week.

Ambassador Thang praised the coordination and support of Saintes city in organizing the Vietnamese Culture Day, a significant event to mark the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and France and the 10th anniversary of the bilateral strategic partnership.

Hannah Nguyen