The COVID-19 pandemic has not only adversely affected the health of infected individuals, but it has also impacted various aspects of political, economic, and social life, along with the activities regarding external relations.
Featuring the motto "friendly neighbours, comprehensive co-operation", the country has joined with Cambodia in the fight against the pandemic.
In a recent interview granted to a VOV correspondent based in the neighbouring country, Vietnamese Ambassador Vu Quang Minh stated that the two sides have continued to maintain effective co-operation activities across multiple fields, especially concerning economic and trading ties. With the spirit of offering mutual support during this difficult period, since the initial days of the pandemic, Vietnam has continued to send many medical supplies, locally-produced test kits, as well as essential equipment such as masks and sanitizer to support Cambodia.
Health and disease control agencies of both nations also closely co-operated to exchange information and provide treatment advice when Vietnamese people first traveled on cross-border cruise ships which were infected with COVID-19 last year.
Both countries quickly agreed on a flexible mechanism with innovative measures in place to both ensure the prevention of the cross-border pandemic whilst maintaining and promoting the exchange of goods between the two nations, including both cross border trade and formal trade channels to facilitate the continuation of trade.
Most notably, the transportation of goods, including a range of agricultural products, between localities has remained uninterrupted as a mean of maintaining trade exchanges. Last year’s two-way trade turnover reached over US$5 billion which can be viewed as a great success in terms of bilateral trade ties.
Another bright spot can be considered as the strong co-ordination of the two countries to support the return of students, including providing safe and effective isolation and testing measures which are put in place for COVID-19.
The Vietnamese diplomat also went on to express his wishes that competent agencies from both countries would co-operate better in exchanging information when imported cases were detected to be carrying COVID-19.
Moving forward, it will continue to be essential to inform each other in a timely manner and provide the travel schedule, residence, and contact information of infected individuals to make it easier for relevant agencies to speed up the effective traceability and zoning off affected areas to guard against the potential spread of the pandemic.
The two countries must also strengthen the co-ordination of joint efforts and actions to prevent cross-border crime from taking advantage of the epidemic situation, whilst better controlling the common border, Ambassador Minh added.