Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia convene court conference

The third court conference between border provinces of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia took place in the Lao capital of Vientiane on December 25.

The Vietnamese delegation was led by Truong Hoa Binh, Chief Judge of the Supreme People’s Court.

Speaking at the event, the three countries’ chief judges expressed their delight at the coordination in implementing the two previous conferences’ joint statements in the fight against crimes, particularly those related to drug smuggling and human trafficking.

Binh said that the sharing of experience in judgment, crime combat and judicial assistance has contributed to deepening the time-honoured friendship of the three courts.

Delegates pointed out advantages and difficulties facing the courts in this work, as well as proposing strategies and orientations for bilateral and multilateral cooperation in the time ahead.

They also discussed and put forth appropriate measures to prevent cross-border crimes.-

Vietnam offers sympathy to Thailand on tsunami commemoration

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has sent a message to Thailand expressing deep sympathy over the losses caused by the Indian Ocean tsunami, as Thailand is to mark the disaster’s 10th anniversary with a ceremony in the southern province of Phang Nga on December 26-27.

“Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to the Governments and people of Thailand and other countries over the tremendous losses caused by the tsunami disaster 10 years ago,” the PM’s message read.

He praised the great efforts that have been made to surmount the disaster’s consequences, stressing that the anniversary creates an occasion for the two countries to reiterate their joint commitment to bolstering cooperation in preventing and combating natural disasters.

Thailand was one of the four countries hardest hit by the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, with 11,000 dead and missing.

On December 26, 2004, a 9.3 magnitude earthquake off Indonesia's western coast sparked a series of towering waves that swept across countries as far apart as Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Somalia.-

President meets 2014 national trademark awardees

State President Truong Tan Sang met with representatives of the 63 businesses winning the Vietnam National Trademark Award 2014 in Hanoi on December 25, urging them to seize opportunities stemming from free trade agreements to accelerate the country’s growth.

He lauded the businesses for making good performances against difficulties hitting the national economy, reminding them that the country is integrating widely into the regional and global economies.

The State leader asked the firms to further improve their products’ quality by applying advanced production methods and technology and building a healthier financial capacity for enhancing their competitiveness in the world market.

He also lauded the outcomes of the National Trademark programme and expressed hope that the awardees will share their experience with other enterprises to make Vietnam’s brand names highly competitive globally.

According to Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang, head of the Vietnam National Trademark Council, the 63 awardees include 48 recognized earlier last year by the National Trademark programme and 15 newly-honoured names.

In 2013, branding and trade promotion activities within the framework of the programme brought together 7,000 businesses which signed 280,000 deals totaling US$1.4 billion and VND162 billion, he said, adding that contracts sealed at trade fairs valued nearly VND1.9 billion (US$89,300).

President's visit adds fresh impetus to Vietnam-Cambodia ties

President Truong Tan Sang’s visit to Cambodia on December 23-24 is of great significance to the growth of bilateral ties between Vietnam and Cambodia.

Deputy Foreign Minister Ho Xuan Son made the remark while responding to the media about the outcome of the visit.

During the visit, senior leaders compared notes on the friendship and comprehensive cooperation between the two nations and regional and international issues of shared concern.

Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni and other leaders thanked Vietnam for valuable assistance for Cambodia, saying the Cambodian people always bear in mind Vietnamese volunteer soldiers’ help in liberating them from the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime in 1979.

They expressed their resolve to develop the relations in line with the motto of “good neighbourliness, traditional friendship, and comprehensive and sustainable cooperation”.

Both nations consented to adhere to the set principles not allowing any hostile forces to use their respective territories to threaten the other’s security, Son added.

They agreed to consider adjusting relevant policies aiming to promote investment and elevate two-way trade to US$5 billion next year and higher figure in the following years.

They voiced their resolve to finalize border demarcation and marker planting on the two countries’ shared borderline as soon as possible to build a borderline of peace, friendship, cooperation, and development.

The leaders also concurred to create the best possible conditions and provide equal treatment for the Vietnamese and Cambodian communities in each other’s country, the Deputy Foreign Minister said.

The two countries will continue collaboration and offer mutual support at multilateral forums, and work together on building an united ASEAN Community in 2015 and setting major orientations for its next stage of development.

They expressed their support for the peaceful settlement of disputes in line with internationally recognised principles and regional commitments.

They vowed to work hand in hand with other member countries of the Mekong River Commission to ensure the sustainable management and use of the river’s water resources.

Deputy FM Son highlighted the visit as a great success and a major contribution to the sustainable development of bilateral ties.

Army’s 70th anniversary observed in DPRK

The Vietnam Military Attaché Office in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) hosted a banquet to mark the 70th founding anniversary of the Vietnam People’s Army (December 22).

The recent function was attended by a number of DPRK senior officials, including General O Kum Chol, Chief of the General Staff of the DPRK People’s Army, and representatives of foreign Military Attaché Offices in Pyongyang .

Addressing the event, a representative of the Vietnam Military Attaché Office said over the past seven decades, the Vietnam People’s Army, under the leadership of the Communist Party of Vietnam, recorded great victories in the fight for national liberation and unification.

The official also emphasised Vietnam ’s constant stance of enhancing defence strength for self-defence as well as for the maintenance of peace, stability and cooperation in the region and the world.

Lauding the achievements that the Vietnam People’s Army has gained over the past 70 years, a representative of the DPRK side affirmed that the DPRK is keen on boosting the traditional friendship and cooperation between the two armies and people.

HCM City officials visit Laos

Lao Deputy Prime Minister Somsavad Lengsavad received a delegation from Ho Chi Minh City led by Vo Van Thuong, Standing Vice Secretary of the municipal Party Committee, in Vientiane on December 25.

Thuong, who is also a member of the Party Central Committee, affirmed that HCM City will spare no effort to realise its cooperative projects and programmes with the capital Vientiane and other Lao localities to foster the two countries’ special relations.

He expressed his belief that under the sound leadership of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party, Lao people will reap greater achievements.

Meanwhile, the Deputy PM was delighted about the cooperation between HCM City and Vientiane, which are twined cities, and hoped the ties will be more efficient and practical at the service of the bilateral special relations.

The HCM City delegation, which is currently on three-day working visit from December 24, is scheduled to be greeted by Bounnhang Volachit, Vice State President on December 26.