25/04/2017 09:15 GMT+7 print

Vietnam, New Zealand look forward to stronger ties

Hanoi, April 24 (VNA) – Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and visiting Foreign Minister of New Zealand Murray McCully have agreed to continue fostering development momentum to lift the bilateral relations to a higher level during their talks in Hanoi on April 24.

The officials expressed their joy at the flourishing Vietnam-New Zealand ties in recent years, especially in defence-security, agriculture, development assistance, tourism, education and people-to-people exchange.

They said the issuance of a joint statement on strengthening the Vietnam-New Zealand comprehensive partnership towards a strategic partnership in 2015 laid a foundation for outlining and building a vision for the bilateral ties in the coming time.

The two sides reaffirmed the importance of the relationship, expressing the hope to continue promoting political trust and deepening the Comprehensive Partnership towards Strategic Partnership.

The ministers agreed in principle on basic contents of the Vietnam-New Zealand Action Programme in 2017-2020, and assigned the two sides’ relevant agencies to compete remaining procedures for the signing of the programme, which rolls out orientations for the bilateral relations in the next four years, focusing on key fields such as politics, defence –security, trade, development assistance and people-to-people exchange.

They applauded the expansion of defence-security ties, stressing that this shows high mutual trust between the two countries.  They also agreed with a plan to increasing the exchange of high-level visits and meetings in 2017.

The two sides will support each other in economic development with a determination to lift two-way trade to 1.7 billion USD by 2020.

Minister McCully affirmed his country wants to further support Vietnam in accelerating growth and development process, and realising its industrialisation and modernisation goals through official development assistance (ODA), trade and investment.

The two countries will give priority to enhancing cooperation in agriculture, education, tourism, scientific research, environmental protection and natural resources management.

Accordingly, New Zealand will make it easy for Vietnam to export tropical fruits to the Oceania country, while continuing to provide Vietnam with technical assistance in agriculture.

During their talks, the ministers compared notes on regional and international of common concern, affirming to enhance cooperation at forums in the Asia Pacific region such ASEAN, East Asia Summit (EAS) the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), APEC as well as the UN.

Minister McCully reaffirmed New Zealand will continue supporting and coordinating with Vietnam to help the Asian country successfully organise meetings and activities in the APEC Year 2017.

The two sides underlined the importance of settling international disputes, including those in the East Sea, by peaceful measures, on the basis of respect for diplomatic and legal processes, in line with international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

They also called for the full implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and the finalisation of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).