A senior Delegation from the Port of Danang, Vietnam led by Port Director General Nguyen Thu arrived in Oakland on May 15th, hosted by the Oakland Board of Port Commissioners. Danang is a small but quickly-growing port located in central Vietnam with Haiphong on the north and Ho Chi Minh City on the south.

During the visit to Oakland the Delegation was introduced at the Port of Oakland Board’s May 16th meeting, and subsequently met with the full Board and senior staff, and conducted business meetings with ocean carriers and terminal operators. In February of this year, Port Board 1st Vice President Anthony A. Batarse Jr., 2nd Vice President Darlene Ayers-Johnson, and senior staff visited the Port of Danang to sign a ‘Cooperation Agreement’ between the two ports. The agreement pledges that the two ports will ‘closely work in exploring fields of cooperation such as port management; marketing; planning; investment and construction; port and maritime transport security; provision of equipment and facilities; training and capacity building; and other port-related activities.’

‘Our message during our Vietnam visit was that the Port of Oakland is interested in learning more and in developing what we hope will be a long-lasting relationship with the Port of Danang,’ Port Commissioner Batarse said.

‘The government has aggressive plans for developing the port of Danang, which is only two of nearly 100 ports in Vietnam,’ Port Commissioner Ayers-Johnson said. ‘Vietnam is a country on the move. Its people have tremendous energy and pride.’ The highlight and conclusion of the visit to Oakland was a Vietnam Trade Promotion Seminar at the Waterfront Plaza Hotel hosted by the Oakland Board of Port Commissioners, organized by the Bay Area World Trade Center, and attended by approximately 75 local dignitaries and business leaders. Speakers included former Oakland Mayor Elihu Harris, Oakland Councilmember Larry Reid, Vietnamese Consul General Dr. Tran Tuan Anh, and Oakland Port Commissioners Batarse and Ayers-Johnson.

This visit by the Port of Danang illustrates Oakland’s on-going Sister-Port marketing efforts to build trade through Northern California. A similar event was held in Yokohama, Japan in September of 2005 and additional events are being planned with ports in Austrailia, Indonesia, and China.