Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung had a full schedule during his trip to Milan, Italy, holding a number of bilateral meetings with leaders who also attended the 10th Asia-Europe Meeting ASEM Summit (ASEM-10) on October 16-17.
During a meeting with French President Francois Hollande, both leaders hailed the recent outcomes of their bilateral cooperation to implement the Vietnam-France Strategic Partnership.
They agreed to increase delegational exchanges and reach a consensus on how to create a new impetus for their partnership in a number of fields, such as economics, security-defence, infrastructure, aviation and energy.
They compared notes on international and regional issues of common concern, pledging to work together closely to organise the 21st UN conference on climate change in Paris next year.
President Hollande supported the notion to maintain peace, stability and development in the Asian-Pacific region, including security, safety and freedom of navigation, and the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
The Vietnamese leader held a meeting with his Italian counterpart, Matteo Renzi, who holds the EU Chairmanship and chaired the ASEM-10 Summit. The two sides agreed that Vietnam and Italy should join forces to make economic cooperation a key pillar in their strategic partnership.
They discussed measures to encourage and enable their business communities to promote links with a view of reaching 5 billion USD in bilateral trade by 2015.
They pledged to continue working closely at international and regional forums.
Regarding the East Sea issue, the Italian PM affirmed his support for ensuring security, safety and freedom of navigation, and settling disputes by peaceful means based on international law and UNCLOS.
Italy also affirmed its support for the enhancement of relations between Vietnam and the European Union, including the early ratification of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA), as well as the EU’s prompt recognition of Vietnam’s full economic market status along with the conclusion of the Vietnam-EU free trade agreement.
In a meeting with the Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven, PM Dung spoke highly of Sweden’s provision of official development assistance to Vietnam, especially in healthcare, climate change and gender equality.
The two PMs stressed the need to increase the connections between their respective investors, especially in the fields of green technology, transport and healthcare.
Meeting the Irish counterpart, PM Dung spoke highly of the effectiveness of ODA provided by Ireland in the fields of healthcare, education and the settlement of the consequences of unexploded ordnances.
The two sides agreed to focus their cooperation on education, climate change and agriculture, people-to-people exchanges, and child adoption.
The Irish PM expressed his country’s willingness to share its own experience and support Vietnam in taking part in UN peace-keeping missions.
On this occasion, the Vietnamese Prime Minister also met leaders of Finland, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, and Slovenia.
During the meetings, PM Dung suggested ratifying the PCA early and concluding the Vietnam-EU FTA as soon as possible, whilst also discussing measures to boost bilateral cooperation.
He congratulated Kazakhstan on its official ASEM membership.
He also met with Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, who affirmed that the new Government continued to consider Vietnam a key partner in the Asian-Pacific region.
On this occasion, a memorandum of understanding was signed between Vietnam’s Ben Tre province and Tulcea province in Romania, which is supported by the EU and includes projects that are part of the framework of the ASEM Mekong-Danube cooperation plan. This is the first local cooperation project between Vietnam and an EU member state within the ASEM inter-regional framework.
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