Viet Nam, Norway to team up on trade

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Norwegian counterpart Erna Solberg have agreed to back their enter  prises and investors to explore collaboration opportunities, especially in maritime business, seafood, energy, information technology and green growth.


During talks in Ha Noi the two agreed that Viet Nam and Norway should increase the exchange of delegations to boost the efficiency of political dialogue, while enhancing security-defence ties.

They agreed to conclude negotiations on a free-trade agreement between Viet Nam and the European Union in 2015 to create a framework for the expansion of bilateral trade and investment.

Both sides expressed delight at growing relations, especially in politics, economy, development, education and culture.

PM Nguyen Tan Dung thanked the Norwegian Government for ODA aid over the years, particularly for the environment, education, gender equality, health care, and bomb and mine clearance.

The Norwegian PM praised Viet Nam's completion of many United Nations' Millennium Development Goals ahead of schedule, saying that she would assist Viet Nam in fulfilling the remaining targets as well as building post-2015 sustainable development goals.

She welcomed the sharing of Viet Nam's experience in tripartite co-operation projects funded by Norway with developing countries.

The two leaders also agreed to foster connectivity among universities and research centres, especially in science-technology, oil and gas, energy, fishery, agriculture, environment and natural resource management.

Both sides pledged to continue close co-ordination at multilateral forums and international organisations, especially the United Nations and the Asia-Europe Meeting.

Viet Nam said it welcomed Norway's efforts to enhance collaboration with ASEAN, particularly in boosting connectivity, narrowing the development gap, as well as responding to maritime security and climate change.

They also shared concern about recent complicated developments in the East Sea, highlighting the need to settle all disputes through peaceful measures in conformity with international law, the UN Charter and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.

They stressed the significance of speeding up the building of a binding Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC), taking it as an effective tool to ensure peace, stability as well as security, safety and freedom of trade, maritime and aviation in the East Sea.

PM Erna Solberg said Norway wished to deepen co-operation with Viet Nam, particularly in investment and trade.

Senior leaders greet Norwegian PM

President Truong Tan Sang and National Assembly (NA) Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung on April 17 received visiting Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg in Hanoi. 

At the reception, President  Sang described her visit as a contribution to deepening the friendship and cooperation between the two nations while praising Norway's support for Vietnam in the national construction, socio-economic development and international integration. 

The two governments should facilitate linkages between the business communities and accelerate early conclusion of negotiation and signing of the free trade agreement between Vietnam and the European Union.

The two governments should continue to make the best of dialogue and political-diplomatic consultative mechanisms and maintain close coordination at multi-lateral forums, the President told his guest.

He also stressed the need to strengthen economic links and cooperation in culture and education to reinforce the friendship and mutual understanding between the two peoples. 

PM Erna Solberg expressed her nation's desire to deepen its cooperation with Vietnam, especially in investment and trade. 

She praised Vietnam for fulfilling ahead of schedule many UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and pledged that as Co-Chair of the MDGs Advocacy Group, she will continue to support Vietnam in fulfilling the remaining MDGs and build Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Meeting the Norwegian PM on the same day, the top legislator reiterated Vietnam's wish to forge the traditional friendship and all-sided cooperation with Norway and other European countries. 

For her part, the Norwegian PM suggested the two legislative bodies should step up cooperation to facilitate joint programmes between the two governments, especially those in the field of marine economic and energy, adding that Norway is willing to work with Vietnam in maritime transport, fishery and ship building, which are the strength of the North Europe country. 

The two leaders noted with satisfaction the sound relations between the two law-making bodies, particularly Norway’s support for Vietnam in organizing the 132nd Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly held in Hanoi from March 28 to April 1, and in issuing the Hanoi Declaration. 

They consented to work closely on setting up the Friendship Parliamentarians Groups, strengthening exchange visits and sharing law enforcement experience.

President attends second national congress of lawyers

President Truong Tan Sang has urged the Vietnam Bar Federation (VBF), a socio-professional organisation representing the will and legitimate interests of lawyers nationwide, to continue playing its role as a bridge between the Party, State and its members. 

The Party and State are willing to offer all possible support for the VBF to fulfill its tasks, he told the second National Congress of Lawyers for the 2014-2019 tenure in Hanoi on April 18, with government officials and 390 delegates representing over 9,000 lawyers nationwide taking part. 

Specifically, he called for ideas about modifying any flaw in legal regulations or mechanisms, making it easier for lawyers to better do their job. 

At his request, the VBF must work closely with State management agencies and consolidate its apparatus from the grassroots to central level. 

On professional training, the leader asked each lawyer to hone skills to be capable of dealing with international lawsuits. 

Aside from the past achievements, he also pointed out shortcomings that need to be fixed during this tenure, admitting that the rate of lawyers remains low in the world rankings and their competence has yet to meet demand while several localities fail to watch over lawyer activities. 

At the end of his speech, the President called on the congress to elect qualified and experienced staff to the VBF Standing Committee and the National Lawyers’ Council - the highest body operating during the interval between the two congresses. 

During this tenure, the VBF sets to develop a pool of lawyers qualified in ethics and professional skills, especially in mountainous and poor regions. 

It will also intensify the observance of professional ethics and conduct, improve the quality of legal practices and raise public awareness of their role and position in the society. 

Since May 2009, lawyers across the country have handled nearly 77, 130 criminal and 65,200 civil cases, provided legal counseling and free assistance services for more than 272,300 and 37,800 other cases, respectively. 

The VBF was established on January 16, 2008 under the Prime Minister’s decision, assembling 63 provincial and municipal bar associations nationwide. 

During its first tenure from 2009 to 2014, the VBF has proactively participated in lawmaking, education and dissemination, legal aid provision as well as other social movements launched by the Party, State and Vietnam Fatherland Front, thus enhancing its position and image among the public.

President Sang to attend Asian-African Conference

President Truong Tan Sang will lead the Vietnamese delegation to the Asian-African Conference to be held in Indonesia’s capital Jakarta on April 22-23 at the invitation of his Indonesian counterpart Joko Widodo. 

The President will also attend the Commemoration of the 60th Anniversary of the Asian-African Conference (also known as the Bandung Conference) and the 10th Anniversary of the New Asian-African Strategic Partnership, to be held in Bandung City, Indonesia on April 24.