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Vietnamese, Japanese PMs hold talks, pledging further cooperation in defence-security, post-COVID recovery

VIETNAM, May 1 -  

Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính (right) and visiting Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang

HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính and his Japanese counterpart Kishida Fumio discussed in-depth Việt Nam and Japan's bilateral relations, as well as international and regional issues of mutual concern, during their talks in Hà Nội on Sunday (May 1).

The two government leaders expressed their joy at the great strides in the Việt Nam-Japan relationship and reached an overall agreement on the major orientations, as well as measures to deepen cooperation in all aspects, opening up a new development stage in the extensive strategic partnership between the two countries.

They reached a consensus on continuing to enhance political trust through maintaining high-level visits and contact and the effectiveness of cooperative and dialogue mechanisms.

PM Chính appreciated the visit of PM Kishida, which he said reflects the importance that the Japanese government attaches to the relations with Việt Nam. He reiterated Việt Nam’s consistent policy of considering Japan a leading important and reliable strategic partner.

The Japanese PM re-affirmed that Japan treasures its relations with Việt Nam and values Việt Nam’s increasingly elevated role and position both in the region and the world. He also said that Japan will continue to work with and support Việt Nam in socio-economic development, including in key infrastructure like urban railways and North-South hi-speed rail line, receiving Vietnamese trainees and students and assisting the Vietnamese community in Japan.

The two leaders welcomed the outstanding progress in implementing the outcomes of PM Chính’s official visit to Japan last November, with the completion of an updated document on the progress of cooperation in eight aspects, namely; health care (including COVID-19 prevention and control), investment-trade, official development assistance (ODA) infrastructure; people-to-people exchange; environment-climate change; judicial affairs; defence-security; and culture-education. 

According to the document, most agreements and projects reached during PM Chính’s visit to Japan are making good progress, such as the observation satellite, the metro line No 1 in HCM City, Việt Nam-Laos connectivity enhancement, the initiatives on digital transformation, technology renovation and supply chain promotion, support of COVID-19 prevention and control, defence-security, settlement of copyright violations and the resumption of commercial flights.  

They agreed to promote collaboration in post-pandemic economic recovery, including in trade, investment, agriculture, energy and the environment.

The two countries will work to effectively implement a programme on new-generation ODA loans with flexible and preferential conditions along with streamlined procedures for strategic infrastructure building, transport infrastructure, digital transformation, response to climate change and health care.

They will speed up procedures so that Japan can declare the opening up of its market for Vietnamese longan in September this year while continuing to facilitate the export to Japan of Vietnamese pomelo, avocado and rambutan.

Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính (left) and visiting Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio inspect the guard of honour at the welcome ceremony on Sunday. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang

The PMs also agreed to increase cooperation to help Việt Nam participate deeper in regional and global supply chains, accelerate digital transformation and the building of digital government, digital economy and digital society and realise its commitment to net zero emissions by 2050.

The two sides will push ahead with collaboration in security and defence, UN peacekeeping operations and war consequence settlements in Việt Nam.  

PM Chính asked Japan to support Việt Nam in successfully achieving economic self-reliance and independence, and extensive international integration, and at the same time, study and establish a common mechanism to assist Việt Nam’s industrialisation and modernisation efforts in service of the 5-year socio-economic development plan and the 10-year socio-economic development strategy.

The two PMs also vowed to promote cultural and people-to-people exchanges and tourism and coordinate to organise activities to mark the 50th anniversary of the two countries' diplomatic relations in 2023.

Exchanging views on regional and international issues, they agreed to coordinate closely at international and regional forums such as ASEAN, Mekong and the UN, and in responding to global challenges like climate change and epidemics, as well as in implementing the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

Regarding the Ukraine issue, PM Chính said Việt Nam attaches special importance to the humanitarian issue and announced that Việt Nam will provide US$500,000 in aid to Ukraine through international humanitarian organisations. The decision was welcomed by PM Kishida.

On the South China Sea (called East Sea by Việt Nam) issue, the two government leaders underlined the importance of ensuring security, safety and freedom of aviation and maritime activities, and of settling disputes and differences by peaceful means, including full respect for diplomatic and legal processes, no use of force and no threat of the use of force, on the basis of international law, especially the 1082 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. They also pointed to the significance of the full, comprehensive and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) and the early completion of an effective and substantial Code of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (COC) that is legally binding and in accordance with international law.

Following the talks, the two PMs witnessed the exchange of 22 cooperation documents between ministries, agencies, localities and enterprises of the two countries.

They jointly chaired a press conference on the main outcomes of their talks.

PM Kishida is making an official visit to Hà Nội from April 30 to May 1. — VNS

The Vietnamese and Japanese Prime Ministers held talks on Sunday. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang