Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh held talks with Chinese Premier Li Qiang in Nanning city, Guangxi province of China, on September 16, while there to attend the 20th China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO) and China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (CABIS), the Vietnam News Agency has reported.
Both sides expressed their delight at and spoke highly of the progress in Vietnam-China relationship in recent years, especially since the historical China visit by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong from October 30 to November 1 last year.
Underscoring the importance of the Vietnam-China relations in the overall foreign policy of each country, PM Chinh affirmed that the Vietnamese Party and State attach great importance to and consider the development of a friendly, stable and healthy cooperative relationship with China a strategic choice and top priority in Vietnam's foreign policy.
In reply, Premier Li asserted that China always considers its relationship with Vietnam a priority in the overall framework of its neighbourhood policy.
China backs Vietnam’s efforts to build and successfully develop its socialist-oriented market economy that suits the country's situation, and stays ready to keep expanding and deepening bilateral substantial cooperation, he said, speaking highly of Vietnam's active and effective participation in and its important contributions to the CAEXPO and CABIS.
Both sides agreed to continue effectively realising the common perceptions reached by their Party leaders to further enhance and deepen bilateral comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership, as well as the agreements and results achieved during PM Chinh's official visit to China in June this year and other high-level visits.
Accordingly, they will facilitate all-level visits; reinforce substantial cooperation in economy, trade, investment, and people-to-people exchanges; maintain their coordination in multilateral mechanisms and forums; manage land borders effectively; and properly control differences while jointly maintaining peace and stability at sea.
The Vietnamese leader highlighted the need for both sides to leverage geographical advantages and complement each other to nurture substantive cooperation in balanced and sustainable development areas.
He proposed that China accelerate the market opening for Vietnam's agricultural and aquatic products, create favourable conditions for the early establishment of Vietnam's trade promotion offices in Chengdu (Sichuan) and Haikou (Hainan), and jointly improve customs efficiency to prevent goods congestion at border crossings.
Vietnam is ready to create favourable conditions for Chinese firms to do business in the country, especially in large-scale, high-quality and modern technology projects that represent China's level of development, bringing about economic and social benefits, PM Chinh said.
In his view, the two countries need to strengthen transportation and border infrastructure connectivity, study joint work in planning and building several railway lines in northern Vietnam, and improve cargo transportation capacity bilaterally and through third countries.
The Vietnamese PM suggested joint efforts to promote tourism cooperation, resolve any lingering issues in several projects in the spirit of harmonising interests and sharing risks, and accelerate the implementation of non-refundable aids from China to Vietnam.
The Chinese Premier affirmed that China will continue opening its market for Vietnamese goods, especially quality agricultural and aquatic products, expand the scale and improve the efficiency of trade by upgrading border infrastructure, policy connectivity, and the building of smart border crossings. Efforts will be made to promote transactions using the Chinese yuan for trade between the two nations.
He said he has directed relevant Chinese ministries to actively engage with Vietnam to step up specific cooperation areas and jointly build stable supply and production chains.
Proposing increased people-to-people exchanges and public awareness of bilateral traditional friendship, especially among the young generations, he said the Chinese Government will encourage its citizens to travel to Vietnam, support the opening of new air routes between the two countries, and hasten the implementation of humanitarian, healthcare, and education assistance projects in Vietnam.
The two leaders agreed on the importance of managing differences properly, and maintaining peace and stability in the East Sea.
PM Chinh suggested that both sides continue strictly follow the high-level common perceptions and the agreement on the basic principles guiding the settlement of the maritime issues between Vietnam and China. He called for respect to each other's legitimate rights and interests, settling disputes and differences through peaceful means in accordance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
They also promised to work closely together at global and regional forums.