Giles Lever

Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

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24th January 2017 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

My ambitions and commitments for 2017

Happy new year to all of you! That’s something I expect to be saying for most of this month: the buzz of welcoming in a new calendar year will barely have worn off before it’s time to celebrate the lunar new year – the Year of the Rooster – in late January. In the west, […]

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8th August 2016 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

Dentistry and defence engagement in Da Nang

Last week I was down in the coastal city of Da Nang in central Vietnam, braving the blistering summer heat to celebrate a “first” in UK defence engagement in the Asia Pacific, and with Vietnam. Pacific Partnership (PP) is an annual US-led multinational defence engagement, focusing on humanitarian assistance and disaster relief with allies and […]

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27th May 2016 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

Son Doong – a Jewel in Vietnam’s crown

Ambassadors to Vietnam enjoyed the trip to Son Doong

Last week I was fortunate enough to enjoy an amazing adventure, joining a group of fellow ambassadors on a five-day expedition to the world’s largest cave, Son Doong in Quang Binh province’s Phong Nha-Ke Bang national park. (Although the trip was organised by the Vietnamese government, let me assure readers that I took the time […]

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17th March 2016 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

GREAT British Food and Drinks Festival in Vietnam

The classic British scone - added some Vietnamese twist with pomelo flowers.

Although I sometimes watch cookery contests like Master Chef on TV, I never imagined I would take part in one.  But life is full of surprises.  And on Monday, instead of chairing the usual start-the-week meeting at the Embassy, I was at Hanoi’s famous Metropole Hotel rolling up my sleeves, putting on an apron, and […]

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13th January 2016 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

Youth Parliament programme

First of all, let me take this opportunity to wish everyone a healthy and successful New Year. “Chuc mung nam moi”! For my first blog of 2016 I thought I’d try something a little different so I invited Nguyen Ngoc Lan, a student at the Hanoi Law University, to share this blog with me. Lan […]

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9th November 2015 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

The Rule of Law

The UK and Vietnam don’t have much in the way of shared history. Sometimes that makes my job harder; sometimes easier. But last week, an all-star cast gathered in Hanoi – the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy, Lord Puttnam; the Vietnamese Minister and Vice Minister of Justice; a former British High Court judge; and most of […]

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17th September 2015 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

Civil Society in Vietnam

Tuesday was International Day of Democracy, and the global theme chosen by the UN was “Making Space for Civil Society”. We took this literally, and made some space at my house in Hanoi for civil society representatives and activists to come and talk about the changing landscape for civil society in Vietnam, the opportunities and […]

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7th March 2015 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

International Women’s Day

To mark International Women’s Day, it’s my pleasure to turn over this space to my first ever guest bloggers: two dynamic Vietnamese women from the world of business, writing on the theme of female economic empowerment through the prism of their own life experiences.  Le Len is head of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants […]

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22nd January 2015 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

2015 – The Year of ASEAN?

My 2015 began after a relaxing Christmas here in Vietnam with my family. Getting back to work after the holidays started with a trip to Manila. On my way to Manila, I experienced some new beginnings. I took the new Nhat Tan bridge and expressway and saw the newly completed international terminal. (When I first arrived in […]

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12th November 2014 Hanoi, Vietnam

Giles Lever

by Giles Lever

British Ambassador to Vietnam

Lighting a Fire

In his essay “On Listening”, the ancient Greek writer Plutarch said about the process of education: “The mind does not require filling like a bottle. Rather, like wood, it only requires kindling, to create in it an impulse to think independently and an ardent desire for the truth.” I came across this quote when I […]

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About Giles Lever

I’ve been ambassador to Vietnam since July 2014. It’s a great privilege to serve as ambassador anywhere, but I’m particularly delighted to be back working for British interests in a…

I’ve been ambassador to Vietnam since July 2014. It’s a great privilege to serve as ambassador anywhere, but I’m particularly delighted to be back working for British interests in a country and a region I know well.

My very first job in the FCO, in 1991, was in the Southeast Asia Department, and that was followed by a posting to Vietnam from 1993-97 – an exciting time, as the “doi moi” process of economic reform and opening up gathered pace.

East Asia has been a bit of a theme in my career, as I also worked at the British Embassy in Tokyo from 2002-2006 (preceded by two years learning Japanese). But I’ve also been fortunate enough to work on a lot of other interesting regions and issues, including on the Middle East and North Africa, international development, and arms control/security. Immediately before coming back to Hanoi, I was Deputy High Commissioner in Abuja, Nigeria.

Outside of work, when I have time, I like running, reading, exploring, and trying to stay in touch from afar with the fortunes of Bolton Wanderers FC. Many of my Vietnamese friends love Premier League football, and are invariably disappointed to hear that the team I support is not in the Premiership!

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