Last update 1/24/2012 9:42:00 AM (GMT+7)

Vietnam strengthens cultural diplomacy

Vietnam did a great job in 2011 organizing many events to promote its land and people. In 2012 the country will continue to use diplomacy to foster its culture.

In 2011, the government strengthened cultural diplomacy along with political and economic diplomacy. Vietnamese diplomatic agencies overseas held various activities to introduce Vietnam to the world, such as a celebration of the 100th anniversary of Ho Chi Minh’s first arrival in France and the 65th anniversary of his first visit as a state leader.

Last year, Vietnam’s cultural diplomacy paid off with 12 tangible and intangible heritages recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

“We are proud that cultural diplomacy has helped political diplomacy to accomplish tasks and introduced Vietnam with a strong position in the international arena,” says Nguyen Thanh Son, Deputy Foreign Minister and Chair of the Vietnam National UNESCO Committee.

In 2011, cultural diplomacy was, for the first time, included in the documents of the 11th National Party Congress and then the Prime Minister approved the Cultural Diplomacy Strategy until 2020. Various activities were held on the theme of building a shared awareness of cultural integration and combining cultural diplomacy with political and economic diplomacy.

The country is set to participate in multilateral cultural mechanisms, and utilize UNESCO programs and initiatives for national socio-economic development to elevate Vietnam’s role and position.

“With its increasing role in the world arena, Vietnam needs to integrate deeper into the world to make the most of this process,” says Son.

More than two decades ago, Vietnam decided to open the doors to the world in order to strengthen the national economy and ensure social stability and security. During the current globalization trend, the country is pursuing a policy to befriend all countries while preserving national identity, and firmly sticking to Ho Chi Minh’s Thoughts and socialist orientation.

According to Son, this year the Foreign Ministry will continue to ensure that cultural diplomacy accompanies overseas Vietnamese affairs. Last year, overseas Vietnamese in many countries had an opportunity to study their mother language and join in regular cultural exchanges. 

“The major task of this year is to mobilize the strength of associations,” says Son. “We will try to bring more overseas Vietnamese back to Vietnam, and communicate the latest developments in Vietnam to people living overseas. We hope that the Vietnamese community abroad will contribute more to Vietnam’s development.”