More than 150 heads of Vietnamese representative agencies abroad and leaders of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) gathered at a conference in Hanoi on August 7 to discuss measures to enhance the effectiveness of activities related to overseas Vietnamese (OV) and citizen protection.
At the event, jointly held by the MOFA’s Department of Consular Affairs and the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese Affairs, the participants focused on outcomes and shortcomings in the work and orientations for the 2018-2020 period.
Heads of the Vietnamese representative agencies abroad shared their real experiences and pointed out challenges and difficulties as well as factors affecting the effectiveness of OV-related affairs and citizen protection, thus seeking solutions to improve the efficiency of the work.
In the past two years, the amount of remittances sent home by OVs exceeded 25 billion USD. In 2017, the flow of investment poured into the domestic market by OVs hit about 4 billion USD.
Alongside, many OV intellectuals and enterprises have made remarkable contributions to the development of various sectors at home, while OV youngsters have showed their interest in developing the motherland.
Meanwhile, despite unprecedented and difficult cases of citizen protection happening currently, authorized agencies have shown timely response and ensured interests of Vietnamese individuals and organisations abroad.
Specifically, in the recent two years after the 29th Diplomatic Conference, authorized agencies carried out citizen protection for more than 16,000 Vietnamese citizens and over 600 vessels with 5,000 fishermen seized by foreign forces or faced difficulties abroad.
Addressing the event, Deputy Foreign Ministers Vu Hong Nam and Nguyen Quoc Dung asked for drastic measures to attract more resources from OVs to serve national development as well as to provide timely and accurate response in consular affairs and citizen protection, especially in the context that the world situation has seen rapid and unexpected developments.
Nam stressed that in the coming time, it is necessary to increase the role of overseas Vietnamese representative agencies in acquiring aspirations of Vietnamese communities abroad, thus rolling out measures to support the communities in reinforcing their legal status, settlement and social integration, while maintaining the Vietnamese language and national cultural identity.
He stressed the need to lure more OV resources for national growth, with focus on youngsters. It is also crucial to update the communities with accurate information about policies of the Party and State, Nam stressed.
Meanwhile, Dung proposed relevant agencies actively carry out consular affairs in line with law to reduce complaints and denunciations, while speeding up the formation of a sustainable inter-sectoral mechanism on citizen protection and seeking more speedy methods to share information between MOFA units and other agencies.
He underscored the necessity to strengthen international cooperation in the field, as well as bilateral and multilateral dialogues, creating a legal foundation for the protection of rights and interests of Vietnamese legal entities and citizens in other countries.
Dung also pointed to the need to mobilise social resources and efforts of international organisations in citizen protection, while applying more effective communication measures to guide Vietnamese citizens travelling abroad and provide them with updated information through various channels such as websites and hotlines of Vietnamese representative agencies.