Foreign FMs’ visits to VN in spotlights
VietNamNet Bridge – Ten official visits made by foreign Foreign Ministers (FMs) to Viet Nam over the past eight months paved the way for bilateral relations and cooperation to be expanded.
Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh (R) receives Japanese FM Kishida Fumio, Ha Noi, August 1, 2014
Strategic partnership relations strengthened
At the meeting of the Viet Nam – Japan Cooperation Committee held in Ha Noi on August 1, Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh and Japanese FM Kishida Fumio discussed measures to promote the Extensive Strategic Partnership.
They agreed to foster Japan’s investment in Viet Nam by implementing the 5th phase of the Viet Nam-Japan Joint Initiative on developing Viet Nam’s support industries and exchanged measures to trade links.
Both sides agreed that maintaining peace, stability, maritime freedom, security and safety in the East Sea is a common responsibility and interest of the international community; and that related sides should resolve disputes in accordance with international law via peaceful dialogues and take no action to complicate the situation further.
Japanese FM said his country agreed to provide six used vessels and equipment worth JPY500 million to help improve Viet Nam’s maritime law enforcement capacity.
Meanwhile, during the talks in Ha Noi on April 15, Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh and Russian FM Sergei Lavrov have agreed that the Viet Nam-Russia comprehensive strategic partnership has been developing positively, bringing practical benefits to the two countries.
Both sides deliberated measures to expand the bilateral cooperation, especially in economy, trade, culture, education, science and technology as well as coordination in the international arena.
Regarding regional and international situation, Deputy PM Minh expressed his belief that Russia will continue to promote its role in enhancing cooperation in Asia-Pacific, especially at multi-lateral forums coordinated by ASEAN.
He also said Russia advocates Viet Nam’s active role in ASEAN and ASEAN’s central role in the regional architecture.
Indian Minister for External Affairs Sushma Swaraj’s official visit to Viet Nam on August 25 aimed to strengthen the traditional relationship and Strategic Partnership with Viet Nam.
In the talks with Deputy PM Pham Binh Minh, they agreed to strive to raise the two-way trade turnover to US$7 billion by 2015 and US$15 billion by 2020.
They were unanimous in bringing into full play bilateral cooperative mechanisms and committed to creating favorable conditions for the two countries’ businesses to enhance economic and investment cooperation and advantageous areas of both sides.
The two sides reciprocated complicated situations in the East Sea, agreeing the importance of ensuring marine peace, stability, security and safety and dealing with conflicts in the East Sea with peaceful measures based on international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea 1982 and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC).
Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh and Philippine FM Albert F. del Rosario on May 21 consented to organize the first meeting of the joint foreign ministerial-level working group which was set up to develop a roadmap for elevating the Viet Nam-Philippines relations to a strategic partnership level in the third quarter of 2014.
Regarding regional and international situation, both sides focused discussions on ASEAN cooperation and the East Sea issue. The two countries affirmed to coordinate closely and double their efforts together with other ASEAN members to successfully build the ASEAN Community, uphold solidarity and promote ASEAN centrality in the regional cooperation and emerging regional architecture.
Expanding cooperation with countries in Oceania
There were two high-ranking visits from the largest nations in the Oceania including Australia and New Zealand to Viet Nam in the first quarter of 2014, which showed their desires to promote the comprehensive partnership relations with Viet Nam.
Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh welcomes Australian FM Julie Bishop, Ha Noi, February 18, 2014
The first visit was made by Australian FM Julie Bishop from February 18-19.
At the talks with Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh, both sides agreed to boost exchange of high-ranking delegations, quickly finalize the action program for the 2014-2016 period in a bid to expand cooperation in such fields like politics, security, defense, trade, investment, development aid, and education among others.
On March 26, FM Murray McCully confirmed that the Kiwi Government continues to regard Viet Nam as one of its key partners in the Asia-Pacific region and supports the Southeast Asian country to run for a non-permanent seat of the UN Security Council for the 2020-2021 tenure in his talks with Deputy PM, FM Minh.
They also agreed to maintain reciprocal visits and mark the 40th anniversary of diplomatic ties (June 19, 1975-June 19, 2015), the Viet Nam-New Zealand Action Plan for the 2013-2016 period.
During the talks with the Australian and New Zealand FMs, the leaders also highlighted the importance of maintaining peace, stability and cooperation in the East Sea, free navigation and maritime safety, implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and early establishment of a legally-binding Code of Conduct (COC) in the East Sea.
Relationship with other nations enhanced
Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh and Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Jose Manual Garcia Margallo have agreed on measures to boost bilateral ties between the two countries, following talks held in Ha Noi on March 26.
Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh receives Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Jose Manual Garcia Margallo, Ha Noi, March 26, 2014
They agreed that two countries should increase communication and the exchange of delegations, while optimizing existing cooperative channels, such as political consultations at deputy foreign minister level and the joint committee on development cooperation.
The two sides also promised to create favorable conditions for businesses of both countries to meet and establish links.
Viet Nam pledged to work as a bridge to help Spain expand its relations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and ASEAN member countries.
During talks with FM Ri Su Yong of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) on August 6, the two leaders sought ways to beef up bilateral ties.
Both sides took the occasion to talk international and regional issues of common concern, including the Korean Peninsula and East Sea.
During a meeting with State Minister at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sudan Kamal Al-Din Ismail Saeed on February 18, Deputy PM, FM Pham Binh Minh said he valued the guest’s visit, hoping it would help boost the bilateral friendship and multi-faceted cooperation.
He suggested Viet Nam and Sudan be well prepared for the first meeting of the two countries’ joint committee slated for the capital Khartoum in April 2014, and speed up negotiations and the signing of important agreements, including those on double tax avoidance, investment encouragement, banking cooperation, and visa exemption for diplomatic passport holders.
For his part, Kamal-Eddin Ismail Saeed proposed Viet Nam continue strengthening cooperation and sharing experience in agricultural production and aquaculture with Sudan.
In the talks with Kyrgyz FM Abdyldaev Erlan Bekeshovich, the two sides held that in spite of the geographical distance, the traditional friendship has been nurtured and well developed, especially in politics and diplomacy.
They agreed to speed up negotiations for agreements on economics, trade, investment and finance to create a legal foundation for stronger cooperation in economic, culture, sports, tourism, and education between the two nations.