Elevating the bilateral relationship to transform Vietnam

Viet Tan



7 September 2023

Contact: Dr. Suzie Xuyen Dong | +1 (346) 704-4744

Viet Tan statement on US-Vietnam ties:
Elevating the bilateral relationship to transform Vietnam

President Joe Biden’s upcoming visit to Vietnam on September 10, 2023 offers opportunities for the country and its people.

The People’s Republic of China continues to increase its aggressive behavior in the South China Sea. Last week, Beijing released a new map featuring a “10-dash line” that further encroaches on its neighbors. China has repeatedly violated Vietnam’s exclusive economic zone while continuing to occupy Vietnam’s Paracel Islands and numerous features in the Spratlys claimed by both Vietnam and the Philippines. The Vietnamese Communist Party’s policy of hedging has made Vietnam more vulnerable. Appeasing China has made Vietnam constrained politically and economically.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 has awakened the world to the similar threat from an expansionist China. And with China’s economy experiencing unprecedented difficulties, Hanoi must adapt and re-orient the country’s foreign policy.

It is time for the Vietnamese Communist Party to abandon its fear of “peaceful evolution” and truly upgrade diplomatic relations with the United States and other democratic countries. This will help Vietnam avoid excessive dependence on China and to promote its own economic development, especially in the strategic areas of advanced technology, workforce development, and environmental protection.

Given the above landscape, Viet Tan affirms that:

  • Only the Vietnamese people have the right to decide the future of Vietnam.
  • Upgrading diplomatic relations with the United States and other democratic countries offers strategic benefits. Vietnam needs to strengthen its relationship with the United States to enhance security cooperation, increase military capabilities against China’s expansion in the South China Sea, and maintain stability in the region. Additionally, Vietnam needs the world’s support to pressure China to end its illegal occupation of the Paracel and Spratly Islands.
  • U.S. cooperation can help Vietnam develop an economy focused on technological advancement, educational innovation, and workforce development. Vietnam is one of the most promising countries to supplant China in the global supply chain.
  • Improving Vietnam-U.S. diplomatic relations is only meaningful if the issue of human rights is addressed. The Vietnamese Communist Party must commit to ending the arbitrary use of laws to arrest activists and suppress basic rights. The United States must incorporate human rights conditions into the plan of action between the two governments. Vietnam will truly contribute to a free and open Indo-Pacific when it has a free and open society.

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