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Successful NA Chairman’s visit helps bolster partnership with Laos: Official

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Chair of National Assembly Committee for External Relations Vũ Hải Hà. — VNA/ Photo Doãn Tấn

HÀ NỘI — The visit by National Assembly (NA) Chairman Vương Đình Huệ to Laos from May 15-17 was a success, helping further foster the cooperative relations and mutual support between the two parliaments, and bolster the great friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive partnership between the two countries, according to Chairman of the NA Committee for External Relations Vũ Hải Hà.

Speaking to the Vietnam News Agency following the visit, Hà said that senior leaders of Laos highly valued the first visit by Huệ as the Vietnamese top legislator during the two countries’ Solidarity and Friendship Year 2022, making him the first foreign parliament leader to visit Laos during the ninth tenure of the Lao NA.

The Lao side congratulated Việt Nam on its achievements in socio-economic development and pandemic control, and informed the Vietnamese leader on Laos’ socio-economic targets and tasks as well as its action plan to deal with COVID-19 impacts and boost socio-economic development, he said.

Hà underlined that NA Chairman Huệ’s visit sent out a message that the Vietnamese Party, State, NA and people always have understanding of and sharing with Laos with a spirit of comradeship, brotherhood and mutual support, and Việt Nam always stands by the side of, accompanies and assists Laos to overcome all challenges for further development.

Ha noted that during the visit, NA Chairman Huệ and the Vietnamese delegation conducted 27 official activities, including talks between the NA leader and his Lao counterpart Saysomphone Phomvihane.

At the talks and meetings, leaders of the two countries had substantial and deep discussions on cooperation between the two parliaments and two countries as well as regional and international issues of shared concern.

Both sides agreed to work closely in effectively implementing the cooperation agreements reached between the two NAs during the visit for the 2022-26 period, while increasing delegation exchanges between the two NAs and NA agencies as well as parliamentarians’ groups and the People’s Councils of localities sharing the border and twin relations.

The two sides will continue to coordinate in organising conferences to share experience in parliamentary operation, while cooperating in supervising and promoting the implementation of agreements, treaties and cooperation plans between the two Governments, and working together in organising activities to celebrate the bilateral Solidarity and Friendship Year 2022. They will continue to foster collaboration and mutual support at international and regional inter-parliamentary forums such as the ASEAN Inter-Paliamentary Assembly (AIPA), Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership Meeting (ASEP), and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Francophonie (APF).

They also consented to coordinate with the National Assembly of Cambodia to continue improving the process and procedures to upgrade the mechanism of cooperation among the legislatures of the three countries to the NA Chairmen chaired level.

Particularly, Hà said that the Lao NA leader expressed hope to learn from Việt Nam’s experience in Party affairs in NA operation, ensuring the Party leadership over NA operations.

The two NA leaders witnessed the signing and exchange of a number of cooperation documents, including the Cooperation Agreement between the Office of the National Assembly of Việt Nam and the Office of the National Assembly of Laos and the working minutes on electricity purchase from Laos.

NA Chairman Huệ also visited Champasak province where he met Secretary of the provincial Party Committee and Governor of Champasak Vilayvong Bouddakham, and laid a wreath at the monument commemorating martyrs of the Laos-Việt Nam Combat Alliance. He also visited the Việt Nam-Laos rubber company, the provincial boarding school for ethnic minority students, and the Consulate General of Việt Nam, and met representatives of the Vietnamese community, Vietnamese businesses investing in four southern provinces of Laos.

Besides the activities of the NA Chairman, delegation members also conducted 10 meetings and bilateral exchanges with the respective agencies and partners of Laos. The exchanges all had substantive and comprehensive contents, demonstrating their determination of urgently implementing high-level agreements in 2022, said Hà.

Regarding the outcomes of the conference co-chaired by the two NAs to share the experience on mechanisms and policies supporting post-pandemic socio-economic recovery and development, Hà said that participants shared their experience in performing the role of a legislature in building laws to promote the national socio-economic recovery and development after the COVID-19 to suit the conditions in each country.

The Lao sides highly valued Việt Nam’s experience in approving support packages. NA Chairman Huệ proposed that the two sides hold another conference in Việt Nam to seek measures to boost the recovery process together.

On the special mechanisms to create more favourable conditions for Vietnamese businesses investing in Laos, Hà said that at the meeting with the Vietnamese community in Laos, NA Chairman Huệ, Lao Deputy Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandon and Lao NA Vice Chairman Sommad Pholsena listened to opinions and requests of the community. They affirmed that Vietnamese-funded projects had made positive contributions to promoting socio-economic development of Laos. They pledged to direct relevant agencies to make suitable policies and mechanisms to create more favourable conditions for Vietnamese businesses operating in the neighbouring countries.

Việt Nam is the third largest investor in Laos. The Lao side held that despite a rise of 33 per cent year on year in two-way trade in 2021 to $1.2 billion, the figure has yet to meet the potential of cooperation between the two countries and accounted for a too small rate in the trade revenue of each country.

Both sides agreed on the need to design breakthrough measures to accelerate bilateral economic, trade and investment cooperation, making it match the sound special political ties between the two countries, as well as the necessity to continue to design effective solutions to ease difficulties facing Vietnamese businesses in Laos. —

 

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/politics-laws/1193465/successful-na-chairmans-visit-helps-bolster-partnership-with-laos-official.html

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

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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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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/politics/20220705/vietnam-proposes-measures-to-foster-mekonglancang-cooperation-in-postpandemic-recovery/67956.html

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Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov to visit Vietnam

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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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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/politics/20220705/russian-foreign-minister-sergey-lavrov-to-visit-vietnam/67944.html

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Vietnam leaders congratulate US on 246th Independence Day

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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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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/politics/20220704/vietnam-leaders-congratulate-us-on-246th-independence-day/67935.html

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