Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and President of the European Commission (EC) José Manuel Durão Barroso held talks in Hanoi on August 25 as part of the latter’s visit to Vietnam.
During the event, the two leaders informed each other of the development in the European Union (EU) and Vietnam and their foreign policies.
They discussed measures to intensify bilateral multifaceted cooperation, ranging from politics and security to economy, science-technology, education, justice and migration, as well as exchanged views on international and regional matters of mutual interest like the East Sea issue and the Asia-Europe Summit.
PM Dung spoke highly of Barroso’s visit as it takes place when the two sides are working to speed up the ratification of the Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation (PCA) and the conclusion of negotiations on a free trade agreement between the two sides (EVFTA).
He thanked the EC and EU member countries for their support for Vietnam’s socio-economic development and international integration, as well as their maintenance of aid for the country in the post-2014 period.
To reinforce bilateral economic-trade relations, PM Dung suggested the EU soon ratify the PCA, take into account the difference of development levels between Vietnam and EU members in EVFTA negotiations, and recognise Vietnam as a full market economy when the agreement is signed.
He highly valued the EU’s contributions to the building of an ASEAN Community and its participation in the Mekong-Danube cooperation as part of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).
As the coordinator of the ASEAN-EU relationship, Vietnam supports the EU's enhanced engagement in ASEAN-led regional architecture and will work harder towards the building of a strategic partnership between ASEAN and the EU.
At the talks, President Barroso highlighted Vietnam’s socio-economic growth and voiced his belief that the country will continue to be a magnet for foreign investors, including those from EU member countries.
He expressed his pleasure at encouraging progress in the Vietnam-EU relations, particularly in economy-trade and development cooperation.
The EC leader said he hopes for ASEAN-EU relations to be intensified and affirmed support for ASEAN’s centrality in the evolving regional security architecture.
In terms of cooperation orientations, both sides agreed to increase the exchange of delegations, especially at high-ranking levels, as well as consultations, coordination and mutual support at regional and international forums.
They will facilitate their businesses’ investment in each other’s market and strive to conclude the EVFTA negotiations by this October while strengthening all-round ties, especially in education-training, science-technology, natural resources and environment, agriculture and rural development, and culture-tourism.
The two leaders emphasised the need to maintain peace, stability, security and safety of navigation in the East Sea.
President Barroso reiterated the EU's support for the resolution of disputes in accordance with the UN Charter, international law and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea.
The EU calls on all parties to avoid unilateral actions that escalate tensions and threaten peace, stability, maritime security and safety in the region, and abide by the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) towards the early conclusion of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC), he said.
After the talks, the two sides met with the press and issued a joint press statement on the visit.