Vietnam-U.S. Relations: 25 Years of Substantive and Effective Development

1:24:55 PM | 12/26/2019

The launch ceremony of the logo of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of Vietnam-U.S. diplomatic relations was recently organized, opening a series of jubilant commemorative activities of the two countries in 2020.

The logo, designed by a Hanoi artist and selected in a nationwide contest, will be used by both the U.S. Embassy and Government of Vietnam to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Vietnam – U.S. bilateral relations in 2020. The logo is a flying dove representing the national flags of the two countries, the United States and Vietnam. The overall image symbolizes the sustainable relationship founded on the value of peace for which  both countries strive. 

Permanent Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son emphasized, looking back on the achievements of diplomatic relations between the two countries in the last quarter century, we can see that 25 years is not a long time, but what Vietnam and the U.S. have achieved is really very impressive.

The relationship between the two countries has made rapid and remarkable progress in terms of both level and depth. From being former enemies after the war, the two countries have become friends, and moreover become the comprehensive partners. The U.S. is Vietnam’s largest export market and Vietnam has emerged as one of the fastest-growing importers of the U.S., with an annual growth of nearly 20%.

Assistant Secretary David Stilwell affirmed that the U.S. attaches great importance to the comprehensive partnership with Vietnam; pledged to support a strong, independent and prosperous Vietnam, playing an increasingly important role in the region and looking forward to continuing cooperation with Vietnam to promote substantive and effective development relations.

Reviewing the achievements that the two countries have built during the past 25 years, Assistant Secretary of State affirmed: “To arrive at this landmark moment, we first had to face the legacies of war and their impact on our people. We have moved so far beyond that now. Today, our nations are trusted partners with a friendship anchored in mutual respect. This process wasn't easy”.

The bilateral trade relations have been rapidly growing. The investment of American companies in Vietnam has intertwined our economic success. U.S. businesses are investing more and more in Vietnam while Vietnamese producers are sending more of their goods to enthusiastic American consumers. Twenty-five years ago, bilateral trade in goods was only US$450 million; today is US$60 billion in bilateral trade.

Besides, people-to-people ties have formed the bedrock of our increasingly vital relationship. In 1995, fewer than 60,000 Americans visited Vietnam each year. Today, nearly 700,000 Americans travel to Vietnam annually.

In 1995, there were fewer than 800 Vietnamese studying at universities in the United States. Today, approximately 30,000 young Vietnamese are pursuing studies at all levels all across the United States. In Southeast Asia, no country sends more students to the United States than Vietnam. Vietnamese students currently constitute the 6th largest group of international students enrolled in American universities.

“The health of our bilateral relationship can also be measured by the frequent exchange of our leaders. There is no doubt, the Vietnam – U.S. relationship is enjoying a rising tide, advanced by five Presidential or Prime Ministerial visits in the span of just four years. You need look no further than the Hanoi Summit in February, President Donald Trump’s second visit to Vietnam, for proof of that fact. In fact, President Trump’s visit to Hanoi and Da Nang in November 2017 was his very first visit to Southeast Asia as President.

Prime Minister Phuc was the first Southeast Asian leader to visit the White House in May 2017. And in May, Secretary Pompeo welcomed Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh in Washington,” said Assistant SecretaryDavid Stilwell.

Vietnam and U.S also are working hand-in-hand to address a range of challenges in the Mekong region, ASEAN, and the Indo-Pacific writ large -- including regional security, wildlife and drug trafficking, and transnational crime.

The U.S is eager to support Vietnam as it assumes positions of global leadership next year, from joining the United Nations Security Council for a two-year non-permanent term to chairing ASEAN during a pivotal time in the organization’s history.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said, in 2020, Vietnam and U.S. mark a quarter century since the United States and Vietnam established diplomatic relations. In the past two decades, bilateral trade has grown an incredible 7,000%. Vietnam is now one of the fastest growing economies in Southeast Asia, lifting millions out of poverty.

“In the coming years, the United States and Vietnam must stay focused on the future, building our cooperation in areas from cybersecurity to education to energy to defense,” said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

Thu Ha