2023 was a busy year for Vietnam’s foreign relations. Last month, Chinese leader Xi Jinping visited the country, where he and his hosts announced that Vietnam was joining Beijing’s “community of common destiny.” This came less than three months after U.S. President Joe Biden visited Hanoi, announcing a similarly significant upgrade in the diplomatic ties between the United States and Vietnam. Vietnam has also announced significant upgrades in its relations with other major partners, including Australia, Japan, and South Korea.
What lies behind this rash of diplomatic activity, and what does it say about how Vietnam is seeking to position itself in a world of growing superpower competition?
The Diplomat’s Sebastian Strangio interviews Khang Vu, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Political Science at Boston College and a Hans J. Morgenthau pre-doctoral fellow at the University of Notre Dame, about Vietnam’s diplomatic strategy and great power competition.