• Germany in the Indo-Pacific (II)

    In its competition with China Germany banks on close cooperation with that country's traditional rival Vietnam.

    BERLIN/HANOI (Own report) - In the competition for influence in the "Indo-Pacific," Germany is intensifying cooperation with Vietnam, China's traditional Asian rival. Forty-five years after the establishment of diplomatic relations between Bonn and Hanoi on September 23, 1975, the German government seeks to enhance the "strategic partnership," Germany has maintained with Vietnam since 2011, in particular the expansion of economic relations. From German companies' perspective, this is beneficial, because, for two decades, Vietnam has become a lucrative low-wage alternative to China in some branches, especially in textile and, increasingly in electronics - albeit with certain limitations. By supporting Hanoi in its South China Sea conflict with Beijing, Berlin aims at strengthening a Southeast Asian counterweight to the People's Republic - just like Washington, which, in addition, is involving Vietnam to a growing extent in joint military exercises. Read more