Ho Chi Minh City, Vientiane enhance bilateral cooperation

The two sides agreed to increase delegation exchanges and strengthen bilateral cooperation on all channels and in various fields and highlighted the importance of accelerating trade and investment promotion activities. They encouraged the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group and Malaysia’s Petronas to seek mutual cooperation and cooperation with the third party. They consented to step up cooperation in security and national defense, soon negotiate and sign cooperation agreements on combating human trafficking, extradition, and hand over of prisoners to fine-tune legal frameworks in combating crimes.  The two countries will support each other at regional and international forums, promote ASEAN’s solidarity and central role in the regional security architecture, and increase consultation for peace, security, stability, safety and freedom of navigation and overflight in the East Sea. They called on involved parties to practice restraint, not to use or threaten to use force, respect legal and diplomatic process, settle disputes on the basis of international law including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and soon finalize the Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC). Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah Aman began is on an official visit to Vietnam at the invitation of Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh. The sixth Vietnam-Malaysia Joint Committee for Economic, Scientific and Technological Cooperation is set to be held in Malaysia in 2019. The same day, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc received Minister Anifah Aman at the Government Office.... [read more]

Located in the northern part of South America, Venezuela has a total area of 912,050 square kilometres, with a population of 26 million. Endowed with plentiful natural resources, including oil, gas, iron, bauxite, gold, zinc and coal ores, Venezuela has become one of the powerful economies in South America, with oil exploitation emerging as the spearhead of the economy. Currently, Venezuela is the fifth largest oil exporter in the world, with oil revenue making up 70 percent of the country’s total export value. As part of a national economic development plan, Venezuela has decided to nationalise its oil industry, and has successfully implemented many social welfare programmes, including anti-illiteracy and expanded education programmes for young people, and free primary healthcare services for poor people. Vietnam and Venezuela established diplomatic relations on December 18, 1989, but Venezuelan people demonstrated their support and solidarity with the Vietnamese people’s struggle against US aggressors in the 1960’s and 70’s. Venezuelan soldiers kidnapped a US Major Colonel to negotiate with the US for an exchange of Vietnamese hero Nguyen Van Troi. The development of bilateral ties was marked by an official visit to Venezuela by Chairman of Vietnam National Assembly Nguyen Van An last March and a reciprocal visit to Vietnam by Deputy Foreign Minister R. Rivero last May. On this occasion, the Vietnamese Embassy in Caracas and the Venezuelan Embassy in Hanoi were established. The two sides also signed several important documents to bolster bilateral cooperation. In a recent interview with VOV, Venezuela Ambassador…... [read more]

At the invitation of General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and President of the People's Republic of China, Hu Jintao, Party leader Nong Duc Manh began his official friendship visit to China from August 22-26. In a recent interview granted to a Radio the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) reporter, Chinese Ambassador to Vietnam Hu Qianwen said the visit is an important event of historic significance which will further diversify bilateral cooperation and strengthen relations in the future through the motto “friendly neighbourliness, comprehensive co-operation, long-lasting stability and embracing the future” and “good neighbours, good friends, good comrades and good partners." Mr Manh’s selection of China as his first visit after the successful conclusion of the 10th National Party Congress shows that the new Vietnamese leadership attaches great importance to promoting the relations of friendship and comprehensive cooperation with China and this is also the desire of the Chinese Party and government, said the Chinese Ambassador. Bilateral relations have positively developed in recent times through regular two-way visits by senior leaders of the two Parties and the two National Assemblies. Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh’s visit to China in August will be followed by General Secretary and State President Hu Jintao’s visit to Vietnam in November to attend the 2006 APEC Summit. In addition, cooperative relations between the two countries’ ministries and sectors have been well-established. The Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Ministries of National Defence and Ministries of Public Security have built a cooperative dialogue mechanism and…... [read more]

Besides exchanging high-ranking visits between Vietnam and Thailand, the two governments signed a Joint Statement on Cooperation Framework in the first decade of the 21st century during their first joint Cabinet meeting held in central Da Nang city in December 2004.Vietnam and Thailand have so far inked nearly 30 bilateral agreements of cooperation in economy, trade and investment, culture, tourism and environment. Their two-way trade turnover has increased rapidly, reaching nearly US$1.5 billion in the first half of this year, including US$440 million worth of Vietnamese exports to Thailand. Vietnam exports computers and computer accessories, crude oil, coal, and electronic products to Thailand while importing petroleum, plastic materials and motorbike spare parts from the country.The two countries have agreed to cooperate in promoting rice exports and stabilising rice prices on the international market. The Vietnam Food Association and the Thai Rice Exporters Association signed an agreement on rice prices in July 2006. Thailand has invested in 125 projects valued at US$1.5 billion in Vietnam, ranking ninth among countries and territories and third among ASEAN member economies. These projects are focused on seafood, mining exploitation, food processing and banking services. The two countries are committed to carrying out many projects and programmes within the framework of the East-West Corridor, the Greater Mekong Sub-region, the Ayeyawady - Chao Phraya - Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy (ACMECS) as well as at regional and international forums with a view to promoting bilateral cooperation in defence and security, education and training, culture, science and technology, environment…... [read more]

In order to meet urgent demands of the international situation and domestic economy, the 7th National Party Congress adopted guidelines on multilateralisation and diversification of Vietnam’s foreign relations, marking the start of its international integration process. The 8th National Party Congress in 1996 decided to “accelerate Vietnam’s regional and global economic integration process”. Resolutions of the 8th Party Central Committee’s 4th plenum held on Dec. 29, 1997 said, “Vietnam should take the initiative to actively infiltrate and extend its international markets”, and stressed, “We must prepare human resources, a legal foundation, and particularly competitive products to integrate in regional and global markets.”The 9th National Party Congress affirmed, “Vietnam will take the initiative to integrate in the international and regional economies in the spirit of making the most of its internal resources, making international cooperation more effective, ensuring independence, sovereignty and the socialist orientation, defending national interests, national security, maintaining cultural identities and protecting the environment”. To realising the Party’s socio-economic development strategy for the 2001-2010 period, which says “building an independent and sovereign economy should coexist with active integration into the international economy”, Vietnam is restructuring the national economy, completing the law and policy system, and making domestic businesses more competitive to prepare for international economic integration. In 2002, the Party Political Bureau issued Resolution 07 on international economic integration, emphasising consistent guiding principles for the process. To fulfil the Resolution, the Prime Minister and his Cabinet issued an action plan and assigned specific tasks to the ministries, branches and…... [read more]

At the invitation of State President Nguyen Minh Triet, President of the Czech Republic Vaclav Klaus began his four-day official visit to Vietnam on September 29. This is the first visit to Vietnam by the CzechState leader since 1993, marking a new step of development in the relationship between the two countries. The CzechRepublic is located in the centre of Europe and borders on Slovakia, Austria, Poland and Germany. Before the 1990s, the CzechRepublic was a poor country in terms of natural resources with low economic growth. However, after that time, the Czech economy has quickly recovered with a rather high growth rate thanks to sound polices on reform, privatisation and economic restructuring in the 1993-1996 period. In 1996 alone, the Czech Republic’s GDP increased by 4.8 percent and in early 1995, it was admitted to the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) as an official member. For many decades, the CzechRepublic has been one of the most developed countries in Europe in the early stage of mechanization and electrification with a focus on key production sectors such as heavy mechanical engineering, automobile manufacturing, energy and chemistry. After emerging from the 1997-1999 economic recession, the Czech economy has not only bounced back but is quickly keeping pace with the world economy. The adjustment of policies such as further strengthening the State’s role in macro management, focusing on long-term development plans, restructuring organisation and modernization, attracting foreign investment and continuing the privatization process has helped the national economy maintain its…... [read more]

Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh begins his official friendship visit to Laos on October 10, at the invitation of General Secretary of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) and State President of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic Choummaly Sayasone. The second visit to Laos by Mr Manh within one and a half year is another vivid manifestation of the time-honoured friendship and solidarity between the two Parties, the two States and the two peoples, showing the Vietnamese Party and State’s consistent policy of attaching great importance to the consolidation and strengthening of traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between the two countries in the new situation. The regular meetings and contacts between the two countries’ senior leaders, ministries and sectors for many years have become a fine tradition that helps promote mutual understanding and solidarity between the two countries and create new opportunities for bilateral cooperation. Based on the orientations set by the two countries’ senior leaders, all-round cooperation between Vietnam and Laos has strongly developed in all fields. Currently, the two sides are focused on increasing the efficiency of key cooperation programmes in the 2006-2010 period, especially in energy, mineral exploitation, transport and industrial crop growing. In the past eight months, the two sides have carried out a project to build Xekaman 3 hydro-electric-power plant, signed a memorandum of understanding on building Xekaman 1 hydro-electronic power plant, inaugurated a 111 km-long section of highway 18B stretching from the central highlands region of Vietnam to southern Laos and…... [read more]

From December 18-21, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung pays his official visits to Cambodia, Laos and Thailandat the invitations of Cambodian Prime Minister Samdec Hunsen, Lao Prime Minister Buasone Bouphavanh and Thai Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont. Mr Dung’s first official visits as Prime Minister to the three countries are not only courtesy visits, according to ASEAN practice but they are aimed at promoting Vietnam’s relations with neighbouring countries in Southeast Asia.The visits take place at a time when Vietnam’s bilateral cooperative relations with Cambodia, Laos and Thailand, as well as its multilateral cooperation with the ASEAN framework have achieved positive progress. Recently, the three Prime Ministers of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia held their fourth meeting in the central highlands city of Da Lat (Vietnam) to discuss the implementation of the Vietnam-Lao-Cambodia Development Triangle plan. During the December 18-21 visits to Cambodia and Laos, PM Nguyen Tan Dung will discuss with the two countries’ leaders specific measures to implement the reached agreements.Thailand and four other ASEAN countries are implementing an early harvest programme on trade relations with China which will reduce tax rates of some products imported from Vietnam and the Philippines, helping accelerating the process of building the ASEAN Economic Community by 2015, five years ahead of schedule as previously planned. Vietnam’s bilateral relations with Cambodia, Laos and Thailand have made significant progress. 2006 is considered a year for Vietnam and Cambodia to strengthen border demarcation and landmark plantation at seven international border gates. The completion of border demarcation and…... [read more]

Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev’s official visit to Vietnam from November 23-25 at the invitation of his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Tan Dung is the first by a leader of the Bulgarian Government since former Bulgarian PM Jan Videnov’s visit to Vietnam ten years ago (1996). Vietnam and Bulgaria established diplomatic ties on February 8, 1950. From 1950-1989, bilateral relations steadily developed as Bulgaria provided Vietnam with valuable spiritual and material support and assistance in the struggle for national liberalisation and defence. From 1990, there was a short period of time where little progress was made in bilateral relations due to changes in Bulgarian institutions. However, since 1993, bilateral relations have been gradually restored through a series of regular exchange visits by the two countries’ high-level delegations. Bulgaria highly appreciates Vietnam’s role in the region and wants to consolidate and develop multi-faceted cooperation with Vietnam. Since 1996, Bulgaria’s PM,National Assembly speaker and Defense Minister visited Vietnam twice. Former Vietnamese PM Phan Van Khai’s visit to Bulgaria in September, 2000, marked an important milestone in bilateral relations. The Sofia mayor accompanied by a business delegation resumed cooperation with Hanoi during their visit in March 2002. The Bulgarian Minister of Education and Science and the Minister of Health also visited Vietnam in order toresume cooperation in the respective fields between the two countries. The two sides signed a number of agreements, creating a new legal foundation to promote bilateral cooperation in healthcare, medicine,trade, culture, science and education, post and telecommunications, maritime transport, plant…... [read more]

In the first week of November, Vietnam signed a protocol on its accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) in Geneva after more than 11 years of negotiations. In the second week, Asian countries agreed to nominate Vietnam as the only Asian candidate for non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council for the 2008-09 term. In the third week, Vietnam successfully organised the 14th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, leaving a good impression on international friends. The last week saw the successful organisation of the 10th session of the 11th National Assembly to decide on many national important issues. Vietnam’s admission to the WTO marked a new step in its process of integrating ever more deeply into the world economy. This was an important socio-political and economic event affirming Vietnam’s role and position in the international arena as well as opening up great opportunities for the country to expand export markets for commodities and services, cooperate with new partners, attract more foreign direct investment, speed up economic restructuring and create a favourable legal basis for settling trade disputes to serve national industrialisation and modernisation. However, Vietnam will face numerous challenges. Economic competition will become fiercer, even on a larger scale, to put stronger pressure on enterprises, particularly those which rely on State subsidy. If proper policies and solutions are hard to come by, there will be a high risk of bankruptcy among a segment of businesses, compulsory redundancy and wide division between rich and poor. To be sure, deeper economic integration…... [read more]

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