TOKYO — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính and his Japanese counterpart Kishida Fumio agreed major orientations and measures to foster the extensive strategic partnership between Việt Nam and Japan during their talks on Wednesday.
Affirming that Việt Nam regards Japan as “a reliable, important and long-term strategic partner”, PM Chính said the Vietnamese Government would continue to create an open and transparent investment climate for Japanese businesses and support them to keep their commitment with investors.
The two leaders pledged to bolster co-operation in economic connections, human resource development, science, supply chain, investment, trade, supporting industry, digital transformation, green growth, innovation, smart city, high technology, building infrastructure in response to climate change, receiving trainees and education.
PM Chính thanked the Japanese Government and people for donating 5.6 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine and other medical supplies to Việt Nam.
PM Kishida committed to continue assistance for Việt Nam’s fight against COVID-19 and pledged an additional donation of 1.5 million vaccine doses, adding that the batch will arrive in Việt Nam on Thursday.
PM Chính pledged to actively implement cooperation programmes using the Official Development Assistance fund in COVID-19 recovery, focusing on four sectors: transport infrastructure, infrastructure in response to climate change, healthcare and digital transformation for post-pandemic economic recovery.
The two PMs also agreed to continue to promote effective and practical cooperation in security and defence, especially in transferring technology in defence, military medicine, cyber security, participation in the UN peacekeeping force, overcoming the consequences of Việt Nam war, and improving the law enforcement capacity at sea.
They vowed to work together towards the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries in 2023 and considered the reopening of commercial flights and the launching of vaccine passport.
PM Kishida said 2023 would mark the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two countries, adding that Japan will step up the preparation process to make 2023 become an important milestone in Việt Nam-Japan relations.
During their talks, the leaders pledged cooperation at regional and global forums such as the UN, ASEAN and Mekong and step up collaboration in responding to common challenges of the international community.
They emphasised the importance of ensuring security, safety and freedom of navigation and aviation in the East Sea, resolving disputes by peaceful means including full respect for diplomatic and legal processes, without using force or threatening to use force based on the respect for international laws, especially the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea 1982 (UNCLOS),
They also highlighted the importance of fully and effectively implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), and promoting negotiations to build an efficient, effective and substantive Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC).
After the talks, the two PMs witnessed the exchange ceremony of 10 cooperation agreements between ministries, localities and businesses of the two countries.
On this occasion, the two sides issued a joint statement towards a new era of the Việt Nam – Japan Extensive Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity in Asia.
Earlier, PM Chính met with Japanese President of the House of Councillors Santo Akiko and Speaker of the House of Representatives Hosoda Hiroyuki, separately in Tokyo. —
Government backs Samsung’s long-term business strategy in Việt Nam: Deputy PM
HÀ NỘI — Deputy Prime Minister Lê Minh Khái has confirmed that the Government backs Samsung’s long-term business strategy in Việt Nam, during a reception for business executives attended by Director-General of Samsung Việt Nam Complex Choi Joo-ho in Hà Nội on Monday.
Informing his guests that he is to visit the Republic of Korea within the framework of the bilateral dialogue mechanism on economic cooperation at the deputy prime ministerial level, Khái said that during the visit, he and his RoK counterpart will evaluate the outcome of the economic partnership between the two countries since their previous dialogue in 2019.
Samsung is a big investor in Việt Nam and the Vietnamese Government wants to listen to its opinions in order to discuss with the RoK side how to create more favourable conditions for the firm to operate effectively, the Deputy PM said.
Choi Joo-ho told the host that currently, Samsung has six production factories, one research centre and one sales entity in Việt Nam.
Apart from mobile phone and household appliance products, Samsung also manufactures parts for televisions and telephones, he said. The firm currently employs 110,000 people in Việt Nam. According to Choi, so far, Samsung has disbursed 100 per cent of its registered capital of US$17.7 billion in Việt Nam.
He said that during the fourth wave of COVID-19 in Việt Nam, the firm received great support from Vietnamese localities, adding that its factories in the north resumed production in August and those in the south have operated stably since November.
Last year, Samsung’s revenue reached $56.7 billion. This figure is expected to rise 15 per cent this year, he said.
The executive thanked the Vietnamese Government for assisting the firm over the years, expressing hope that Việt Nam will continue to maintain safe and flexible adaptation to the pandemic to ensure that production is not interrupted.
Choi gave some proposals regarding the global minimum corporate tax in line with the regulations of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Deputy PM Khái pledged that Việt Nam will work to access more vaccine sources to enable businesses to operate safely in the new normal situation, while urging enterprises, including Samsung, to continue to coordinate with local government to effectively control the pandemic for long-term operations.
He lauded Samsung’s investment in a $220-million research and development centre in Việt Nam, which is scheduled for completion in 2022, affirming that the Vietnamese Government supports the firm’s long-term business strategy in Việt Nam. He asked Samsung to report its difficulties to the Vietnamese authorised agency for timely solutions.
Stressing Việt Nam’s determination to deliver on its commitments to businesses, Deputy PM Khái said that Việt Nam wants to listen to feedback from the business community in response to changes in policies. —
NA Chairman: fiscal policy plays leading role in harmonization with monetary policy
National Assembly Chair Vuong Dinh Hue has asked commercial banks to share difficulties with businesses, stressing that such support will also help themselves and that banks cannot have profits without businesses.
National Assembly Chair Vuong Dinh Hue
The Vietnam Economic Forum, with nearly 200 delegates, including four Politburo members, the Secretary of the Central Party Committee, 20 members of the Party Central Committee, 25 ministries and heads of industries, and nine ambassadors and charge d’affaires closed on December 5.
Twenty presidents and CEOs of large corporations also attended the meeting.
Emphasizing that the Covid-19 pandemic was ‘unexpected, unprecedented and unpredictable’, Hue agreed with economists that in such a special context there should be special solutions. The bailout for economic recovery needs to support both aggregate supply and demand, with priority given to supply.
It’s necessary to implement both fiscal and monetary policies in a flexible and harmonious way, with a reasonable roadmap, wide coverage and a reasonable amount. The time for implementation is 2022-2023 and at most the first months of 2024.
The targets must be feasible and timely so as to satisfy businesses and people’s demands.
“It’s very difficult and time consuming to maintain macro stability, and it’s very easy to quickly lose stability,” Hue said.
He agreed with economists that Vietnam could accept overexpenditures and public debt increases in the short term in exchange for economic recovery, but it must ensure national financial security in the long term, especially debt payment capability.
The management and allocation of resources needs to be transparent and public to prevent wrongdoings and conflicts related to interest groups. To do so, there must be a mechanism to supervise and inspect implementation in different ways.
Stressing that the socio-economic crisis is due to Covid-19, Hue pointed out that medical solutions will be the decisive and primary factors, while fiscal policy will play the leading role, implemented in harmonization with monetary policy.
He said that helping businesses and people overcome difficulties will help nurture sources of revenue for the state budget and the banking system.
“It’s not granting of favors here. By supporting businesses, commercial banks will support themselves. They cannot have profits without businesses,” he said.
Stand on your own feet
Replying to the warning that Vietnam may repeat the mistakes it made in 2008 when it launched an interest rate subsidy package, Hue said the package at that time did not have specific targets, which was a problem.
“We must not avoid the difficult and do the easy. There should be an interest rate subsidy package,” Hue said, adding that it would be better to focus on important fields, businesses, cooperatives and business households that can pay debts or recover.
It’s also necessary to give financial support to upgrading of old apartments. Hanoi, for example, has thousands of apartment buildings that need upgrading, HCMC has 600, and Hai Phong also has such buildings.
“We will obtain a high growth rate if these bottlenecks are removed,” he said.
The National Assembly Chair said that social housing projects are seriously needed, especially for low income workers, and the state should continue to divest from enterprises as parts of the economic recovery program.
Hue agreed with the opinion that businesses need reasonable regulation, not money, emphasizing that institutional improvement is the most important factor in the economic recovery program.
He said the important message of the forum is to have self-reliance, self-improvement, and ability to stand on one’s feet, as well as better national and corporate governance.
At the same time, Vietnamese need to be optimistic, turn risks into opportunities and seek opportunities in challenges.
“The consistent message is that we need to go together. There’s a saying that if you want to go far, go together with your friends,” Hue said.
Vietnamese, Lao top legislators want parliamentary ties to become ‘exemplary model’ in region, world
HÀ NỘI — Chairman of Việt Nam National Assembly (NA) Vương Đình Huệ and Lao counterpart Saysomphone Phomvihane on Monday in Hà Nội discussed various aspects of bilateral cooperation, as the latter is on a three-day official visit to Việt Nam.
This is the first high-level international delegation to visit Việt Nam’s NA in nearly two years due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
On behalf of the leadership of the parliament, NA Chair Huệ warmly welcomed Lao NA Chair Saysomphone’s visit to Việt Nam, expressing appreciation for the fact that the Lao legislator chose Việt Nam as the first country to visit in his new capacity.
The visit is an important milestone, contributing to the consolidation and promotion of great friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between the two Parties, States and peoples in general, and between the National Assembly of the two countries.
NA Chair Huệ reaffirmed the Party and State’s consistent policy to attach great importance to and give the highest priority to preserving and promoting the close, unique and special relationship between Việt Nam and Laos, and that Việt Nam always wholeheartedly, strongly and comprehensively supported Lao’s reforms, nation-building and defence.
For his part, the top Lao legislator thanked Việt Nam for its COVID-19 support, with donations of medical supplies worth US$6.3 million since the beginning of the pandemic.
He acknowledged the socio-economic development aid, totalling VNĐ930 billion ($40.26 million), that Việt Nam provided for Laos in 2020, when Việt Nam itself was facing numerous challenges.
The Lao NA Chair also expressed gratitude for the Lao NA building that Việt Nam financed and constructed as a gift for the Lao Party, State, and people, stressing that Laos will make full use of the building to make it truly stand out as a vivid demonstration of the special friendship and solidarity between the two countries.
During the talks, the two parliament chairs concurred in the assessment that political-diplomatic relations in all channels between Việt Nam and Laos have been increasingly tightened.
In particular, the two sides have coordinated to successfully organise two official friendship visits by General Secretary and President of Laos Thongloun Sisoulith to Việt Nam in June this year, and later, a visit from Vietnamese State President Nguyễn Xuân Phúc to Laos in August, which both have yielded many important and substantive results, creating more impetus for comprehensive cooperation between the two countries.
Cooperation in the fields of security-defence, trade and investment, energy, transport connection, education and training, COVID-19 fight cooperation, and cooperation between localities and people-to-people exchanges have been given proper attention, the two leaders agreed.
The Lao NA Chair noted with appreciation how even with COVID-19, the two-way trade this year hit $948 million so far, up 28 per cent compared to the same period last year, while Việt Nam is currently the third biggest investor in Laos out of 54 countries and territories, with 409 projects and capital totalling $1.9 billion.
The two NA leaders said bilateral parliamentary cooperation is flourishing, with the two NAs effectively carrying out the 2017 agreement with many diverse cooperation activities including high-level delegation visits, thematic discussions and experience sharing conferences, support for each other in capacity building for legislators and NA staff, as well as infrastructure and IT capacity.
The two chairs have discussed in detail the cooperation results of the two National Assemblies and covered orientations of cooperation for the future.
On that basis, the two Presidents agreed to consider amending and supplementing the cooperation agreement between the two countries’ NAs, focusing on a number of important items such as close coordination in supervision and facilitating the effective implementation of high-level agreements between the two countries, especially the key tasks in the Việt Nam-Laos cooperation strategy for the 2021-30 period, Việt Nam-Laos cooperation agreement for the 2021-25 period, and other agreements.
The two want to make Việt Nam-Laos parliamentary ties an exemplary model in the region and in the world.
NA Chairs Huệ and Saysomphone agreed to strengthen exchanges between the two women parliamentarians and young parliamentarians, in tandem with seminars on implementing the role of the legislative body and conferences on the rich tradition of special relations between the two countries to help the younger generations understand the history and inherit this “great asset”.
Further exchanges, especially between people’s councils of provinces and centrally-run cities, including neighbouring localities, should be encouraged, the two top legislators noted.
The two chairs agreed that Việt Nam and Laos should continue to promote the trilateral parliamentary cooperation mechanism of Việt Nam – Laos – Cambodia.
The two also agreed that they would propose to the Cambodian National Assembly and Senate to consider, when necessary, holding meetings involving the three countries’ parliament leaders in order to promote and improve the effectiveness of the Việt Nam – Laos tripartite cooperation mechanism.
NA Chair Huệ also wants the two parliaments to hold events commemorating the 60th anniversary of Việt Nam-Laos bilateral diplomatic relations (September 5, 1962) and 45th anniversary of Việt Nam-Laos Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation (signed in July 1977) in 2022.
On this occasion, the two NA Chairmen witnessed the handover ceremony of medical supplies worth $1 million by the Vietnamese NA to support Laos in COVID-19 prevention and control, including 2.1 million medical-grade masks, 100,000 COVID-19 test kits, along with protective gear, sanitisers, body temperature scanners and $100,000 in cash. —
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