About 1,000 overseas Vietnamese Friday attended an annual ceremony held by the government in Hanoi to welcome them home for celebrating the Tet (Lunar New Year) holiday.
The ceremony, known as Xuan Que Huong (Spring in the Fatherland), was organized at the Thang Long Royal Citadel, with the participation of President Nguyen Minh Triet, representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and others.
It is estimated that over 500,000 overseas Vietnamese from all over the world would return to Vietnam to celebrate the traditional holiday this year, as compared to 480,000 people last year, local news website VnExpress reported.
According to the statistics compiled by the Committee for Oversease Vietnamese Affairs, last year's remittances to Vietnam reached over US$8 billion, increasing by more than 20 percent year on year.
Overseas Vietnamese also contributed over VND16 billion ($820,723) in relief aid for flood victims in the central region, the committee said.
They have invested in more than 3,200 projects in Vietnam with a total investment of nearly $5.7 billion.
Currently nearly four million Vietnamese people are living, working and studying in 101 countries and territories, including 300,000 university graduates and postgraduates.