by Le Yanna, Dong Hua
HANOI, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Regarding the principle for developing China-Vietnam relations which spans ideas of long-term stability, future orientation, good-neighborly friendship and comprehensive cooperation, youth exchange is an important aspect of the "future orientation" principle.
In recent years, Chinese and Vietnamese youth exchanges have become more and more vivacious and have helped to create a solid foundation for improving understanding among the peoples of both countries, while passing on traditionally friendly ties, and facilitating the stable development of the two countries' comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.
The China-Vietnam Youth Festival is one of the important activities when it comes to bilateral youth exchanges.
In August 2010, the Chinese and Vietnamese young people took part in the first China-Vietnam Youth Festival held in China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.
The second China-Vietnam Youth Festival themed "Flying the Youth's Dream, Building the Bright Future" was held in Guangxi's Dongxing city, and saw the participation of 3,000 Vietnamese and around 6,000 of their Chinese peers. The festival's activities took place in Guangxi's seven cities.
The third China-Vietnam Youth Festival entitled "Vietnamese and Chinese Youths Join Hands in Fostering Friendship" will taking place in coming days in Vietnam's seven localities, with the participation of about 9,000 Vietnamese youths and 1,000 Chinese young people.
Dinh Quynh Dang is teaching Chinese at a vocational school in Hanoi and took part in the second China-Vietnam Youth Festival. When Dang was a third-year student, she was selected as one of ten delegates for the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam who would participate in the festival in Guangxi. That was the first time she had been to China.
"Impressions are still fresh in my mind. The festival's scale was huge, and my Chinese peers were so wonderfully friendly. We exchanged ideas with each other about many things," she told Xinhua recently.
Dang said she made friends with many Chinese youths during the festival, including a young man whose surname is Wei. She often called him "Brother Wei".
"On the last day of the festival, "Brother Wei" took me to the shops to buy gifts for my family members. Later, when he proposed marriage to his girlfriend, he notified me and invited me to go to China to attend his wedding ceremony," she recalled.
Regarding the effects of the festival, Dang said her command of Chinese improved, and recruiters found her resume to be very attractive, because she attended the China-Vietnam Youth Festival.
"People-to-people exchanges have a long history despite the fact that not every period of the Vietnam-China ties has been stable. As youths, we should have a good command of the culture and the economy of our neighbor country, and work to enhance a positive sentiment between the peoples of the two countries, and speed up bilateral cooperation. By doing these, we can continue to better develop our bilateral ties more and more," Dang stated.
Also partaking in the festival at that time along with Dinh Quynh Dang was another Vietnamese girl named Nguyen Thi Minh Hang. At that time, Hang had just quit her job at a Vietnamese company and planned to work for a Chinese firm. Now, she still remembers the strong sense of responsibility, punctuality, and enthusiasm of Chinese students, and she still keeps in touch with them via the Chinese online application QQ.
"Before going to China, I did not have any visual understanding of China or Chinese students. After the festival, my theoretical understanding of China, mainly through books, has become a reality. Now, I want to not only work with the Chinese people, but also seek a Chinese boyfriend and visit China again as soon as possible," Hang told Xinhua recently.
Nguyen Vinh Quang, standing vice chairman of the Vietnam-China Friendship Association, is deeply interested in participating in organizing youth festivals. Since Vietnam and China normalized their relations, their bilateral ties have developed stably with a focus on "future orientation", and the two countries should continue to promote youth exchanges, Quang told Xinhua.
"That is not the work conducted by only researchers like us about Vietnam-China ties. That is the work to be done by all, including intellectuals, and most importantly, youths. If youths can engage in exchanges and understand each other then the difficulties in solving differences will diminish day by day and be settled eventually," Quang stated.
Vietnam and China are accelerating their renewal and opening-up processes, "so if our youths strengthen exchanges and experience sharing rewarding experiences, they can make a breakthrough in contributing to the development and future of the two countries," he said.
At a recent press briefing in Hanoi, spokesman of the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs Le Hai Binh said China-Vietnam Youth Festivals forge closer friendship and enhance mutual trust and understanding between young generations of the two countries, and help to deepen their comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.