UK to donate another 320,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccines to Việt Nam

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Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Tô Anh Dũng. — Photo from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

HÀ NỘI — Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Tô Anh Dũng held phone talks with Minister of State for Asia at the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office Amanda Milling on Thursday evening, during which they agreed to coordinate to increase the efficiency of the two countries’ key cooperative mechanisms.

They expressed their delight at the comprehensive development of the Việt Nam-UK strategic partnership. In 2021, despite impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, both sides have maintained high-level exchanges, with a highlight being Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính’s working trip to attend the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) and visit the UK from October 31-November 3.

They discussed measures to realise contents agreed by the two countries’ senior leaders to deepen the bilateral strategic partnership.

In the context that the two nations will celebrate the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties in 2023, the officials stressed the importance of arranging high-level delegation exchanges and intensifying the efficiency of key cooperative mechanisms, including the early organisation of the Strategic Dialogue at deputy foreign ministerial level.

Milling appreciated Việt Nam’s strong commitments at COP26, adding that the UK was willing to support Việt Nam in reducing emissions and shifting to clean energies.

Dũng, in turn, affirmed that the Vietnamese Government was determined to implement declared commitments and speed up the implementation of measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by national resources and assistance of the international community.

The two officials reached a consensus on fostering cooperation in trade and investment on the basis of the UK-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement, including attracting investment in fields such as digital economy, green transformation, renewable energy, green finance, and infrastructure development.

On this occasion, Milling said the UK Government would present an additional 320,000 AstraZeneca vaccine doses to Việt Nam. Dũng thanked the UK Government for this decision and proposed the UK continue helping Việt Nam gain access to COVID-19 vaccines and treatment drugs.

Both sides agreed to maintain close coordination at multilateral forums, particularly at the United Nations. They also exchanged views on several regional and international issues of mutual concern, stressing the importance of respecting and maintaining peace, stability and security, and ensuring navigation and aviation freedom in the South China Sea (called East Sea in Việt Nam) in accordance with international law, and considering the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) as a legal framework for all activities at seas and oceans. — VNS

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