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OVERVIEW OF VIETNAM-SWEDEN RELATIONS

I.DIPLOMATIC RELATIONS
1.Introduction
- Sweden was the first Western country to establish diplomatic relations with Vietnam on 11th January 1969. Sweden also boasted the strongest solidarity movement for the Vietnamese people during our war for independence and national reunification.
- June 1970: Sweden’s Embassy in Hanoi was opened.
- July 1970: Vietnam’s Embassy in Stockholm was opened.

2.Exchanged visits
Vietnam and Sweden have continuously exchanged many visits and contacts at different levels in order to strengthen and broaden the longstanding friendship and multi-faceted cooperation between the two countries. 
High-level visits from Sweden to Vietnam:
- June 1973: Minister for Foreign Affairs Kristen Wickman visited Vietnam. 
- April 1978: Minister for Foreign Affairs Karin Soden visited Vietnam. After that, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Sweden visited Vietnam in 1980, 1985, 1988.
- April 1994: Prime Minister Carl Bildt visited Vietnam.
- November 1995: Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Birgitta Dahl visited Vietnam.
- January 1999: Deputy Prime Minister Lena Hjelm-Wallen visited Vietnam and participated in the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and Sweden (January 11, 1969 to January 11, 1999).
- August 2000: Minister for Foreign Affairs Anna Lindh visited Vietnam.
- February 2004: King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia visited Vietnam.
- September 2004: Prime Minister Goran Persson and Minister for Foreign Affairs Laila Freivals attended the ASEM 5 Summit in Hanoi - April 2007: Minister for International Cooperation Gunilla Carlsson visited Vietnam.
High-level visits from Vietnam to Sweden:
- April 1974: Prime Minister Pham Van Dong visited Sweden.
- April 1976: Deputy Prime Minister cum Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Duy Trinh visited Sweden.
- 1989:  Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Co Thach visited Sweden.
- October 1993: National Assembly Chairman Nong Duc Manh visited Sweden.
- June 1995: Prime Minister Vo Van Kiet visited Sweden.
- September 1999: Prime Minister Phan Van Khai visited Sweden.
- November 2001: Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Manh Cam visited Sweden.
- June 2002: Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Dy Nien visited Sweden.
- November 2004: Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan visited Sweden and took part in the “Vietnam Day in Sweden”.

3.Bilateral Agreements between Vietnam and Sweden
- Agreement on Development Cooperation between Vietnam and Sweden.
 - Agreement on Investment Promotion and Protection (September 8, 1993)
 - Agreement on Double Taxation Avoidance and Tax Evasion (March 24, 1994)
 - Agreement on Aviation Transportation (September 25, 1997)
 - Agreement on Cultural Cooperation
 - Agreement on Adoption
 - Agreement on Research Cooperation 2004-2007

II.ECONOMIC RELATIONS
Ever since the establishment of diplomatic relations in 1969, Sweden has been supporting to Vietnam. Sweden has made uninterrupted and effective contribution to the national construction and socio-economic development in Vietnam. The total amount of ODA from Sweden to Vietnam up to date is over 3 billion USD. Initially, the focus was on humanitarian assistance and infrastructure projects. Over the years the focus has been shifted to supporting the Doi Moi reform process.
The Swedish ODA to Vietnam during 2007 amounts to 300 million SEK (about 40 million USD). The main areas for co-operation include poverty alleviation, Public Administration Reform, Economic Reform, Public Financial Management, Health care, Legal Reform, Natural Resources and Environment, Rural Energy, Research Cooperation, Culture and Media.
Trade and investment relations as well as cultural and research cooperation have been developed. The two-way trade value reached 330 million USD in 2006. Sweden ranks 17th among 77 countries and territories investing in Vietnam. The total amount of FDI from Sweden today is over 400 million USD, mainly in the fields of communication, mobile phones and electronic equipment. Kinnevik Comvik group is the biggest Swedish investor. Other Swedish companies investing in Vietnam are Ericsson, Electrolux, Alfa-Laval, Atlas Copco, SKF and Tetra Pak. However, trade and investment relations between Vietnam and Sweden are still modest and much potential remains to be exploited.
Vietnam has been receiving more and more tourists from Sweden and other Northern European countries during the last years.

(2007)