Deputy Minister of foreign Affairs of Vietnam Pham Quang Hieu and UK Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office Minister for Asia Amanda Milling co-hosted the eighth Vietnam-UK Strategic Dialogue in Hanoi on March 28.
|Vietnamese and British officials during the eighth strategic dialogue in Hanoi. (Photo: VNA)|
The two sides discussed specific measures to promote the Vietnam-UK Strategic Partnership, especially in the fields of politics-diplomacy, trade-investment, climate change adaptation, sustainable development, development cooperation, education-training, science-technology, security-defense, and people-to-people exchanges.
They affirmed that the Vietnam-UK Strategic Partnership has been developing positively, in line with the spirit of the September 2020 Joint Declaration on Strategic Partnership between the two countries.
With the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak being gradually brought under control, the two sides agreed to increase the exchange of delegations at all levels and soon resume cooperation mechanisms such as the Policy Dialogue at the Deputy Minister of Defense level and the UK-Vietnam Joint Economic and Trade Commission (JETCO).
They vowed to work closely together to organize meaningful and diverse activities in various fields such as trade & investment promotion, tourism, as well as the organization of cultural events and people-to-people exchanges to mark 50 years of bilateral diplomacy in 2023.
Hieu voiced Vietnams strong resolve to implement its commitments at the 26th United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Glasgow (Scotland) late last year.
He briefed his guest on measures Vietnam has adopted to reduce greenhouse gas emissions with national resources along with international support, and suggested that the UK assist Vietnam in accessing financial resources to realize the commitments.
Milling affirmed that the UK is ready to accompany Vietnam in implementing its COP26 commitments, and supporting the country in emissions reduction and energy conversion.
Both sides expressed their delight at the economic achievements recorded following the enforcement of the UK-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (UKVFTA) a year ago, with two-way trade turnover increasing positively to US$6.6 billion last year. The UK is currently the 15th largest investor out of 140 countries and territories investing directly in Vietnam, with 452 projects valued at more than US$4 billion.
The two countries will continue to take advantage of opportunities from the trade deal and at the same time to expand cooperation in areas such as digital economy, energy transformation, green finance, infrastructure development, finance-banking, they agreed.
Both host and guest welcomed positive progress in defence cooperation between the two countries over the past time, marked by the Vietnam visit in July 2021 by British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, as well as the effective implementation of the Vietnam-UK defense policy dialogue mechanism. They agreed to continue to strengthen the exchange of defense delegations and improve the capacity of Vietnamese soldiers in UN peacekeeping operations.
On security cooperation, the two sides consented to coordinate closely in the fields of migration, immigration, mutual legal assistance, extradition, prevention of organized crime & high-tech crime, anti-human trafficking, as well as cooperation in personnel training and capacity building.
Milling reaffirmed the UK’s policy of considering Vietnam an important partner in the Indo-Pacific region in the context that the UK is moving to enhance cooperation with countries in the region.
She thanked Vietnam for supporting the UK to become a full dialogue partner of ASEAN, and to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
The two sides agreed to continue working closely at multilateral forums and regional cooperation mechanisms. They also discussed a number of regional and international issues of mutual concern, emphasizing the importance of ensuring freedom of navigation, overflight, security and peace in the East Sea.
The UK-Vietnam free trade agreement (UKVFTA), effective on May 1, 2021, is expected to help not only boost trade but also promote investment between Vietnam and the UK.
Vietnam and the UK have substantial cooperation opportunities in the fulfillment of green growth targets, British Ambassador Gareth Ward has affirmed.