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Việt Nam, Morocco promote South-South cooperation for common prosperity: Ambassador

VIETNAM, February 7 - HÀ NỘI — The consolidated cooperation between Việt Nam and Morocco is the result of their shared desire to promote and strengthen South-South cooperation, Moroccan Ambassador to Việt Nam Jamale Chouaibi said in an interview granted to the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) on the occasion of the Lunar New Year (Tết) Festival.

This desire has been materialised through many visits by high-ranking government and parliament delegations as well as the signing of cooperation agreements in various fields, he said.

The diplomat noted that since the establishment of Morocco-Việt Nam bilateral diplomatic ties more than 60 years ago, the bilateral partnership has been developing fruitfully in multiple spheres.

The two countries share similarities in orientations of foreign policies, he said, adding Morocco was the 11th largest contributor to United Nations (UN) peacekeeping operations in 2023, with more than 1,700 peacekeepers working in different African countries.

Both hold important geopolitical locations as Việt Nam is seen as a gateway to Southeast Asia while Morocco is an economic bridge between Africa and Europe, the ambassador said.

Chouaibi expressed his belief that such similarities will create conditions for their cooperation to grow further in the future, stressing that the two countries are emerging, dynamic economies with sustainable growth and they are resolved to promote policies to diversify their trade partners.

The ambassador reviewed a workshop on speeding up the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement held on the sidelines of African Day in Hà Nội last May - which looked into contributions and opportunities generated by the agreement to countries that want to invest in Africa, including Việt Nam, and prospects of cooperation between Việt Nam and African nations, especially Morocco.

Despite the bilateral trade yet to match the potential of the two countries, it has increased year by year, making Việt Nam the second most important economic partner of Morocco in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Việt Nam is focusing on expanding its economic partner network, and the country can count on Morocco to help Vietnamese firms access African markets easily and safely, he said.

The ambassador suggested the two countries jointly initiate trilateral or quadrilateral cooperation activities in African countries, especially in agriculture, with the participation of international donors.

Both countries have ambitious cooperation plans in renewable energy, digital transformation, tourism, agriculture, infrastructure and logistics, industry and technology, aiming to become leading emerging economies in their respective regions. It is an opportunity for them to share experience and knowledge through the establishment of inter-sectoral committees, he emphasised.

In 2017, Morocco was the first African and Arab country to join, as a partner member, the Mekong River Commission (MRC) which includes Việt Nam, Thailand, Cambodia and Laos.

Morocco has financed the construction of an educational centre in Vientiane, Laos, with the mission of developing training programmes relating to the history of the Mekong River and the opportunities and challenges in the region, the ambassador said.

Chouaibi also highlighted prospects for cooperation between Vietnamese and Moroccan localities, saying the future twinned relationship between Casablanca, Morocco’s industrial and financial centre, with HCM City of Việt Nam will create new momentum for the bilateral cooperation.

Asked about Việt Nam's approaching Tết, the ambassador said the festival helps him learn about Vietnamese traditional culture, and wished Vietnamese people a New Year filled with happiness, prosperity, opportunities and successes. — VNS

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