Hanoi (VNA) – Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and his wife will pay an official visit to Vietnam from July 9-10 at the invitation of his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Minh Triet.
The visit, the first to be made by a Brazilian President after the two countries established their diplomatic ties in May 1989, is expected to create a driving force for the bilateral ties, which are experiencing a fine period of development, between Vietnam and Brazil in particular and Latin America in general.
The Vietnam-Brazil relationship has seen positive progresses in recent years, with the two countries having exchanged a number of visits by high-ranking delegations, including the visits to Brazil by then President Le Duc Anh in October 1995 and then President Tran Duc Luong in November 2004.
Former National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Van An and Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh paid visits to the South American country in March 2006 and in May 2007, respectively.
Vietnam welcomed President of the Brazilian House of Representatives Aldo Rabelo in October 2003, Deputy Minister of Development, Industry and Trade Ivan Ramalho in September 2007 and Deputy Minister of Foreign Relations Roberto Jaguaribe Gomes de Mattos two months later. It also received Minister of Foreign Relations Celso Amorim in February 2008.
The two countries’ foreign ministries signed an agreement on political consultation in October 1995 in addition to the two chambers of industry and commerce’s agreements on cultural cooperation and on promoting ties in October 2003.
The two countries have reached agreements on exchanging diplomatic notes to provide each other with Most-Favored Nation (MFN) status and exempting diplomatic passport holders from visas in November 2004. They also signed an agreement on health care cooperation in May 2007.
The two countries are expected to reach some more agreements during the upcoming visit by the Brazilian President.
Though the two-way trade between Vietnam and Brazil remains modest. It has increased continually in recent years, from 113.8 million USD in 2005 to 204 million USD in 2006 and more than 323 million USD last year.
Vietnam’s main exports to Brazil include coal, rice, garments and textiles, footwear, tires and inner tubes, bicycles and motorbikes, copra, wood furniture, electronics, handicrafts and fine art articles.
The country imports from Brazil chiefly flour, soya-bean oil, animal feed materials, steel, paper and pulp, wood and leather.
Vietnam and Brazil have been maintaining cooperative ties and supporting each other at multilateral and international forums. The South American country supported Vietnam’s bid to join the World Trade Organization and gain a non-permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council in the 2008-2009 term