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Việt Nam Emerges as Key Trade Partner for Slovenia in Asia

Việt Nam has firmly established itself as a key Asian trade partner for Slovenia, as highlighted by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of Slovenia, Tanja Fajon. This development marks a significant milestone in the 30-year journey of bilateral relations between the two nations. In an exclusive interview with the Vietnam News Agency, commemorating the 30th anniversary of diplomatic ties (June 7, 1994 – 2024), Fajon lauded Việt Nam’s burgeoning role and expressed optimism about future collaboration in diverse fields. “The establishment of our bilateral diplomatic ties was a pivotal step,” she remarked, “showcasing our mutual desire for deeper understanding and expanded cooperation.”

Despite the geographical distance and resource constraints, both countries have maintained consistent dialogues, strengthening their exchanges and cooperation. A noteworthy example of this commitment was the third meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee on Economic Cooperation held in Ljubljana last October. This gathering underscored the strategic efforts to bolster economic ties and explore new avenues for collaboration.

Fajon praised Việt Nam’s significant achievements, particularly in bolstering bilateral trade. “Việt Nam’s central position in critical industries and global supply chains is evident in our growing trade relations,” she stated. Highlighting prospects, she revealed that a delegation of Slovenian businesses is set to visit Việt Nam to explore opportunities, especially in the maritime and aviation sectors. Tourism has been identified as another potential area for enhanced cooperation. Fajon expressed her enthusiasm for promoting tourism exchanges, which could serve as a cultural bridge between Slovenia and Việt Nam. Additionally, she highlighted the importance of cultural and artistic exchanges in strengthening bilateral ties.

Slovenia’s commitment to multilateralism and adherence to international law, including the United Nations Charter and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982), aligns with Việt Nam’s principles. This shared commitment underpins the robust diplomatic relationship between the two nations. As Slovenia assumes its role as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the 2024-25 term, Fajon emphasized the strategic importance of enhancing cooperation with Việt Nam across all mutually beneficial areas. This collaboration is further supported by Slovenia’s plans to open an honorary consulate office in Ho Chi Minh City, aimed at facilitating stronger economic ties between Slovenia, a European Union (EU) member, and Việt Nam, a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

The EU-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) has significantly elevated the relationship between the EU and Việt Nam. Fajon reiterated Slovenia’s commitment, alongside other EU member states, to expedite the ratification of the EU-Việt Nam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA). “Việt Nam’s efforts to strengthen the strategic partnership between the EU and ASEAN amidst global uncertainties are commendable,” she noted.

In conclusion, the 30th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Slovenia and Việt Nam not only marks historical ties but also opens new horizons for future cooperation. Both nations are poised to leverage their strategic positions and mutual commitments to foster a dynamic and prosperous partnership.