December 14, 2021 - The Asia Foundation organized a discussion focused on the Korea-Vietnam-United States trilateral relationship on December 9 and 10. The meeting provided an opportunity for scholars, policymakers, and government officials to discuss key political, security, economic, and trade issues important to improving and strengthening trilateral relations. The events were conducted virtually with participants from the three countries.
Despite differences in political ideology, Korean and U.S. engagement with Vietnam have deepened and evolved since formal diplomatic relations were established more than a quarter-century ago. Overlapping strategic and economic interests have led the three countries to expand ties across a broad spectrum of issues.
Specific issues examined during the trilateral included:
1. Political-Security Trends and Challenges in the Indo-Pacific and what these trends and challenges mean for South Korea, the United States, and Vietnam
2. Domestic Determinants of Foreign Policy and what these determinants mean in the trilateral relationship
3. Outlook of the World Economy and Prospects for Recovery in a Post-Covid-19 world
4. Prospects for Enhanced Economic Cooperation and coordination between the three countries to shape rules and norms for regional economic cooperation
Some of the key participants of this dialogue included:
Korea: Jin Park, Chairman, Special Committee on Diplomacy & Security of the People Power Party
U.S: Harry Harding, University Professor and Founding Dean of the Batten School of Leadership at the University of Virginia
Vietnam: Pham Quang Vinh, Former Vietnamese Ambassador to the United States and President of the Vietnam – U.S Society
The Asia Foundation’s International Relations Program and the Foundation’s Korea country office in Seoul organized the trilateral dialogue in cooperation with the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam in Hanoi. This initiative was made possible through the financial support of the Friends of The Asia Foundation in Korea. The Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI) also provided support.
Future trilateral meetings are planned to be held in person in Seoul, Hanoi, or Washington, as travel conditions permit in the next 2-3 years.
The Asia Foundation is a nonprofit international development organization committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. Working through its offices in 18 countries and informed by deep local expertise and six decades of experience, the Foundation addresses five overarching goals—strengthen governance, empower women, expand economic opportunity, increase environmental resilience, and promote international cooperation.