Deputy Defence Minister Sen. Lieut. Gen. Nguyen Chi Vinh and Permanent Secretary of Defence of Singapore Chan Heng Kee co-chaired the 11th Vietnam – Singapore defence policy dialogue in the island state on November 6.
Deputy Defence Minister Nguyen Chi Vinh (L) and Permanent Secretary of Defence of Singapore Chan Heng Kee (Photo: VNA)
On regional and global issues, they highlighted the importance of maintaining security, maritime and aviation freedom, settling disputes by peaceful means in line with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and regional commitments.
In the current context, ASEAN, including ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) and ADMM Plus, plays an increasingly important role, contributing to maintaining regional peace, stability and cooperation.
On bilateral defence ties, they shared the view that joint work has still been maintained via online discussions. Amid the complicated developments of COVID-19 pandemic, they called for a flexible and creative approach to maintaining and organising existing dialogue mechanisms, especially the deputy ministerial-level defence policy dialogue, and sharing of professional experience in military medicine, search and rescue, training and naval force.
Both sides agreed to sign a bilateral defence cooperation agreement in replace of that signed in 2009 and assigned units concerned to arrange it.
During his courtesy call to Singaporean Defence Minister Ng Eng Hen the same day, Vinh thanked the Singaporean Defence Ministry and the Minister for supporting Vietnam in undertaking the role of ASEAN Chair 2020. He expressed wish to further enhance substantial defence ties with Singapore for the sake of peace, stability and development in the region.
Ng Eng Hen, for his part, said Vietnam is the first ASEAN nation to send a high-level defence delegation to Singapore since the COVID-19 broke out, adding that the success of the defence policy dialogue will make practical contributions to strengthening relations between the two nations and armies.
He stressed that there remains room for bilateral defence ties so that it is a need to consider cooperation areas that meet demand of each side.
The Singaporean Defence Ministry will continue working closely with and support Vietnam in fulfilling the role of ASEAN Chair 2020, he said./.VNA