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Japanese PM Kishida Fumio’s Vietnam visit helps advance bilateral ties: ambassador




Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính and his Japanese counterpart Kishida Fumio before their talks held in Hà Nội on May 1. — VNA/ Photo 

TOKYO — Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio’s recent visit to Việt Nam has brought the bilateral extensive strategic partnership to a new period which is more pragmatic and effective, Vietnamese Ambassador Vũ Hồng Nam has noted.    

The diplomat told the Vietnam News Agency (VNA) that the official visit was significant as it marked a milestone in the relationship and affirmed the resolve of the two countries’ leaders to open up a new page of the “Extensive Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity in Asia” between Việt Nam and Japan.

During the visit, Kishida had meetings with Vietnamese key leaders, including Party General Secretary Nguyễn Phú Trong, President Nguyễn Xuân Phúc, Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính and National Assembly Chairman Vương Đình Huệ.

Their good personal sentiments are likely to create a firm foundation for the long-term development of the friendship and cooperation between the two countries and peoples, according to Nam.

Economic cooperation was the main focus of the talks between the leaders, he said, adding that a total of 23 important documents were reached during the visit, covering economy-trade, science-technology, transportation, digital transformation and innovation.

The two sides laid an emphasis on priority cooperation spheres – the diversification of sources of supply, digital transformation and technological renovation. The Japanese government pledged to support 39 firms operating in these fields.

Meanwhile, the Vietnamese side was interested in new-generation official development assistance (ODA) with high incentives and streamlined, flexible procedures in strategic infrastructure in transport, climate change response, digital transformation, and health care.

In their meetings, both Vietnamese and Japanese leaders affirmed the significance of 2023 as the year marks the 50th anniversary of the bilateral diplomatic ties, and agreed to establish national organising committees in charge of holding major celebration events.

Regarding political security, they consented to continue their close coordination at regional and international forums like the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the East Asia Summit (EAS), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), the United Nations and the Mekong-Japan cooperation.

They will work together with other members to implement and expand the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and effectively realise the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

The sides touched upon their common views on the settlement of disputes and differences by peaceful measures, including the respect for diplomatic and legal processes, and in accordance with international law, particularly the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982 UNCLOS).

They also highlighted the comprehensive, full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), soon reaching an effective and substantive Code of Conduct (COC) in line with international law.

The leaders were resolved to soon bring Vietnamese longan to Japan, paving waves for other fruits such as grape, grapefruit, avocado and rambutan to access the market.

Nam suggested Vietnamese businesses pay heed to longan quality, sterilisation and post-harvest preservation and make plans to put the fruit on Japanese supermarket shelves next September.

Việt Nam should pay more attention to high-tech agriculture and enhance production cooperation chains to churn out agricultural products that satisfy Japan’s requirements, he noted.

The ambassador held that the Vietnamese and Japanese economies had become increasingly reciprocal, and the number of Japanese firms in Việt Nam was expected to rise in the time ahead.

To promote the bilateral ties, Nam stressed the need for the two countries to step up the communication work to educate their young generations about the heartfelt and trustworthy relationship. —



Vietnam proposes measures to foster Mekong-Lancang cooperation in post-pandemic recovery



Vietnam’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son has recommended four measures for beefing up the Mekong-Lancang Cooperation (MLC) to promote growth and sustainable development from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Minister Son was speaking at the seventh MLC Foreign Ministers’ Meeting held in Bagan, Myanmar on Monday, centered around ‘Solidarity for Peace and Prosperity.’ 

The event was attended by foreign ministers from the six member countries of the MLC mechanism, including China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam. 

Participants highly appreciated the MLC’s recent contributions to regional cooperation and development, especially amid the complicated developments of COVID-19, and discussed coordination in organizing the second MLC Ministerial Meeting on Water Resources in Vietnam this year.

In this context, the Vietnamese diplomat delivered a speech proposing four major measures to make the MLC more effective.

He firstly mentioned the need for cooperation in boosting economic recovery and resilience from the pandemic, and strengthening customs cooperation and trade facilitation in order to solve goods congestion and ensure the free flow of goods and services in the region.

Second, it is necessary for mutual support among member countries in climate change adaptation and the transition to a green economic model, including clean energy development and climate-smart agriculture.

He also called for stronger cooperation in managing and using water resources in a sustainable manner, strengthening consultation and dialogue on water resource development plans, increasing the sharing of hydrological and meteorological data and hydroelectric dam operations, and expanding coordination between the MLC and the Mekong River Commission.

Vietnam’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son (L) bumps elbows with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi at the seventh Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Myanmar, July 4, 2022. Photo: Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Vietnam’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son (L) bumps elbows with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi at the seventh Mekong-Lancang Cooperation Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Myanmar, July 4, 2022. Photo: Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Lastly, it is advisable to promote people-to-people connections through tourism activities and cultural exchange programs, Son said.

His speech was highly appreciated by the other member countries and was reflected in the conference’s documents, the foreign ministry said in a statement on Monday.

The event came as two-way trade between the lower Mekong River countries and China reached nearly US$400 billion last year, up 23 percent from 2020, while many large infrastructure works have been completed and hundreds of technical assistance projects are being built by the MLC member nations, according to the Vietnam News Agency.

The meeting emphasized the principles of equal cooperation, mutual consultation, benefit-sharing and respect for the United Nations Charter and international law, as well as the legislation of each country. 

It came to an end with the issuance of four joint statements on strengthening agricultural cooperation, disaster prevention, customs and trade facilitation, and exchanges between MLC civilizations. 

Founded in 2016, the MLC is a multilateral cooperation mechanism between the riparian states of the Lancang River and Mekong River. 

The Lancang River originates from Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in southwestern China.

It is called the Mekong River as it flows through the other five countries – Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam – before entering the sea.

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Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov to visit Vietnam



Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov is scheduled to visit Vietnam on Tuesday and Wednesday, the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Monday night.

The visit is made at the invitation of Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son.

In September 2021, Minister Son conducted a business trip to Moscow, where he met with many Russian officials, including his counterpart Lavrov.

In late 2021, State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc visited Russia at the invitation of President Vladimir Putin.

Last year marked the 20th anniversary of the strategic partnership between Vietnam and Russia, while this year is the 10th anniversary of the two nations’ comprehensive strategic partnership.

Lavrov’s visit takes place in the context of new developments in the international and regional situations.

In March, Minister Son joined separate phone talks with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba about the military conflict between the two countries.

In both dialogues, Son affirmed Vietnam’s consistent stance that international disputes and disagreements should be resolved by peaceful measures and in compliance with the basic principles of the United Nations Charter and international law, especially the principle of respecting the independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of countries.

The official asked relevant parties to exercise restraint, reduce tensions, and conduct more dialogues to find a long-term solution that is in line with international law and takes into consideration the legitimate interests of all sides.

During the talks, Minister Lavrov praised Vietnam’s contribution to peace, stability, cooperation, and development in the region and the world.

The official shared recent developments in the situation in Ukraine and affirmed that he would try his best to support the safe evacuation of Vietnamese citizens from conflict zones.

The two sides also discussed bilateral relations, with Minister Son suggesting that Russia continue to pay attention to and create favorable conditions for the Vietnamese community there to stabilize their life, production, and business operation.

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Vietnam leaders congratulate US on 246th Independence Day



Vietnamese leaders have sent congratulatory messages to leaders of the U.S. government and Congress on the occasion of the country’s 246th Independence Day.

State President Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh sent their congratulations to U.S. President Joe Biden on Monday, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Chairman of the National Assembly Vuong Dinh Hue also extended greetings to President of the Senate Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi.

On the same day, Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son sent a congratulatory message to U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Vietnam and the U.S. established bilateral relations in 1995, paving the way for a partnership of trust, friendship, and mutual respect.

The bilateral relationship is guided by the comprehensive partnership signed in 2013 and joint statements issued by the leaders of the two countries in 2015, 2016, and May and November 2017, according to the U.S. Embassy in Hanoi.

After lifting the ban on the sale of lethal weapons to Vietnam in May 2016, the U.S. continued to support the Southeast Asian country in maritime security, including handing over Hamilton-class coast guard ships to Vietnam in 2017 and 2020.

The people-to-people relations between the two countries have also developed rapidly, with tens of thousands of Vietnamese students having come to the U.S. to study, contributing nearly US$1 billion to the local economy.

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