Cultural diplomacy promotes Vietnamese cultural values

If political diplomacy is seen as the core and economic diplomacy as the breakthrough, then cultural diplomacy constitutes a foundational element that shapes the spiritual essence, lending a distinctive character to diplomacy. Cultural diplomacy enhances soft power, projecting a positive and appealing image of Vietnam and its people.

Singer Hoàng Thùy Linh's song "See Tình," released in 2022, has been covered by celebrities in the Republic of Korea, China, and India.

The music video "Hãy trao cho anh" (Give it to me) by young musician and singer Sơn Tùng M-TP reached 10 million views in just over 3 hours and maintained high positions on the trending charts in several countries including the Republic of Korea, Australia, Canada, and the UK.

Trọng Hiếu made history as the first Vietnamese and the first person of Asian descent to reach the Eurovision Song Contest finals. In 2023, Chi Pu became the first Vietnamese artist to leave an impact on the Chinese version of "Sisters Who Make Waves," promoting Vietnamese dishes like bánh cốm (young sticky rice cake) and cultural attire such as áo dài to an international audience.

Vietnamese singers blending cultural heritage with contemporary influences are gaining international acclaim, offering insights into modern Vietnam to the global audience.

In 2021, the government issued the Cultural Diplomacy Strategy to create a policy framework maximizing the expression and transmission of cultural diplomacy, further spreading the image and cultural identity of Vietnam.

In 2023, Hoi An was recognised as a UNESCO Creative City in the field of traditional crafts and folk arts, while Da Lat was recognised as a Creative City in the field of music.

In 2025, the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism will propose to include Ho Chi Minh City and Hue City in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network. Ho Chi Minh City is expected to be recognized as a creative city for cinema, while Hue will join in the field of gastronomy.

Gastronomy also serves as a cultural diplomacy channel that makes Vietnam closer to the world. The Vietnamese community abroad frequently participates in food festivals in their host countries, contributing to introducing the rich flavors of Vietnamese cuisine to international friends.

During his official visit to Vietnam in December 2023, Belarusian Prime Minister Roman Golovchenko and Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh enjoyed coffee together and explored historical-cultural sites in Hanoi.

Earlier in June 2023, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese savored bia hơi, one of the most authentic Vietnamese local beers and banh mi on his first day of visit to Vietnam. Culinary experiences have become ambassadors of Vietnamese cultural diplomacy.

The áo dài, a cultural icon, contributes significantly to spreading and promoting Vietnamese culture. It is not only beloved by Vietnamese people but also by many foreigners.

Many cultural events celebrating Ao Dai have been well-received by locals and tourists. The 10th Ao Dai Festival in Ho Chi Minh City in 2024 drew over 2.9 million domestic visitors and 480,000 foreign visitors, contributing to the city's total tourism revenue of over 694.5 million USD in March.

Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong has emphasized the need to elevate Vietnam's cultural values, strengths, and spirit of dedication to their highest potential. This will generate internal resources and provide the impetus for successfully achieving the nation's development goals.

In that spirit, cultural diplomacy activities have been and continue to introduce Vietnam's rich historical and cultural traditions to international friends, thereby enhancing Vietnam's image and making effective contributions to national construction and development./.