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06/06/2019 - 08:28

"I pay tax to Hue with my heart"

He looks on Hue as his second home, vows to make further efforts to promote friendship, cooperation in the hope that Hue will not only thrive in economy but also preserve the values of human cultural heritage. He is Kwang Han, Mayor of Namyangju City, Korea. In late April, he was awarded the noble title "Honorary Citizen" by the City People's Committee for his great contribution and special affection for Hue.

Kwang Han, Mayor of Namyangju City. Photo provided by Namyangju City

Mr. Kwang Han shared: “First of all, I would like to express my sincere thanks to the City Party Committee Secretary and the People's Committee Chairman and all Hue City residents. I think this is an honor not only for me and my family but also for all Namyangju City residents. This title is Hue City people’s message of wish for the friendship and trust between the two cities to be progressively cemented in the future, and I will endeavor to satisfy that expectation.”

Recently, the two cities have promoted cooperation in economic development, culture, society, education, health and so on. Could you please speak more specifically about this cooperation?

In late February, Mr. Nguyen Van Thanh, Chairman of the City People's Committee together with Hue City delegation visited Namyangju City and agreed to actively promote cooperation, exchange in diverse fields such as economy, tourism, culture, urban management and between the two cities and signed the friendship cooperation agreement.

In order to maintain the continuous cooperation in the above fields, there is a need to have practical cooperation contents not only for the exchanges between the two municipal governments but also for the exchange activity promotion between the people of the two countries with the bridges of culture, sports and so on.

On April 26, the People's Exchange Delegation of Namyangju City participated in the Hue Traditional Craft Festival 2019 organized by Hue City, which is seen as a typical example.

Our city’s artisans exhibited the typical handicraft products of nacre, and even the participating artisans were surprised that the exhibited products received enthusiastic response from customers at the display space. Among the products on display, except for products not sold, the remaining products were almost sold out.

Mr. Nguyen Van Thanh (left), Chairman of Hue City People's Committee gave a souvenir to "Honorary Citizen" Kwang Han. Photo: TH

The football friendly match lasted for two days between Namyangju City People football team and Hue City one had great significance in cementing the friendship between the players of the two cities. In the future, I hope that the exchange activities will be further promoted. Aside from the fields of culture and sports, we will continue to seek and promote the exchange contents to develop cooperation further in friendly exchange and cooperation in the fields.

As Mayor of Namyangju, Hue's friendly city, and now as an honorary citizen of Hue City, do you come under pressure in the cohesion and development of the two cities?

Because I am an honorary citizen of Hue City, so I have no obligation to pay tax, but I always bear in mind that it is my responsibility to pay tax with all my heart.

During the term of Mayor of Namyangju City, I will attempt to help Hue - a city of friendship cooperation - successfully promote the Hue Citadel restoration project to preserve the value of human cultural heritage. In addition, we together with Hue City people will expedite the direct flight opening between South Korea and Hue City.

What is your favorite thing every time you come to Hue?

I came to Hue about 8 times. Hue is famous as a beautiful and peaceful city with the poetic Huong River, a place to preserve the world cultural heritage such as Hue Imperial Citadel, Thien Mu Pagoda and so on. Also, Hue has another charm - a city with a comfortable atmosphere. Above all, the simplicity and friendliness of the people leave a deep impression on me.

Heritage city - Hue's strength should be preserved and its value, promoted. Photo: NP

How do you feel if those factors are compared with Korea?

I was born in Gunsan City, South Korea. Like Hue City in Central Vietnam seen as the standard point of division between South and North Vietnam, Gunsan City is located at the waist of the Korean peninsula, the western edge of the sea. As a port city and a commercial city with diverse international routes with a 122-year history of opening a commercial port, Gunsan City has many similarities with Hue - a city that is promoting the port development projects. On account of these similarities, I feel that Hue is getting closer.

And if Hue is said to be your second home?

I have long regarded Hue as my second home. My coldness tolerance is bad, and the winter in Korea is frosty. I also said many times that in the future I will be in Korea in fall and return to Hue in winter. That can show that Hue is where I can find real peace and relaxation.

In your opinion, what are the strengths of Hue urban development, and which direction should Hue take to develop those advantages?

I deem that the long-standing cultural heritage of Vietnam’s last dynasty such as royal tombs, imperial citadel... and the poetic Huong River are the distinct advantages from other cities. In the future, Hue City should both keep intact the tourism resources of outstanding value of the cultural heritage of humanity such as the Hue Imperial Citadel restoration project ... and focus on infrastructure development.

The core issue to develop tourism is a convenient transportation network. Therefore, connecting direct flight routes from different international cities to Hue is sorely needed and should soon be developed.

Thank you!

Story: PHAN THANH

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