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President’s state visit to mark new stride in Vietnam - Indonesia relations

President’s state visit to mark new stride in Vietnam - Indonesia relations The state visit to Indonesia by President Nguyen Xuan Phuc from December 21 to 23 is an important event marking a stride in the two countries’ relations and helping develop their strategic partnership in an increasingly substantive and effective manner, said Vietnamese Ambassador to the country Ta Van Thong.

Talking to Vietnam News Agency, Thong said bilateral relations have grown on the basis of friendship and mutual trust into a strategic partnership that covers all fields of cooperation and is a future-oriented relationship.

The coming trip by President Phuc will affirm the two countries’ strategic role towards each other and their common strategic interests. It will also substantially help enhance mutual understanding and political trust, thus creating an important political foundation for expanding ties between the two Governments, parliaments, localities, and peoples, and fostering cooperation at multiple levels and in many areas, he noted.

Highlighting major achievements and milestones in bilateral relations, the ambassador said Vietnam and Indonesia boast much untapped potential as well as many complementary strengths. Both are also active members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and hold certain roles and statures in the region.

To further advance bilateral cooperation as their strategic partnership will turn 10 next year, he held that the two sides should prioritise stepping up cooperation in some areas.

In terms of politics and security, Vietnam and Indonesia should promote unanimity and coordination at multilateral organisations and forums to help strengthen ASEAN’s solidarity and centrality, and maintain peace, stability, cooperation, and development in the region and the world; press on with opinion exchanges and meetings at all levels; bring into play existing cooperation mechanisms; coordinate their policies in line with Indonesia’s priorities towards the region, especially when the archipelago nation will serve as the ASEAN Chair in 2023; and launch a programme for implementing the strategic partnership for the next phase.

The two countries should also foster economic, trade, and investment links; work out measures for raising bilateral trade to 15 billion USD by 2028; reinforce economic connections, including developing balanced trade and tapping into cooperation potential in new aspects, especially energy transition; and conduct negotiations to remove non-trade barriers, tackle difficulties, and create more favourable conditions for businesses to access each other’s markets, Thong went on.

They need to increase people-to-people connectivity via the exchanges of arts troupes, mass organisations, and localities. It is also important to work together to turn Indonesia into one of the favourite destinations of Vietnamese students in Southeast Asia, and increase scholarships for each other’s students, according to him.

The diplomat held that the two sides also hold huge tourism potential which should be optimised more strongly through products linking the countries and communications to deepen mutual understanding of each other’s histories, traditions, and cultures.

He suggested increasing the flight frequency of current air routes and opening new ones connecting their tourist destinations, adding that tourism cooperation projects should take into account Indonesia’s relocation of its capital and development of new regions.

For its part, the Vietnamese Embassy will continue acting as a bridge and working hard to help promote bilateral relations, Thong added./.