HA NOI (VNS)— Japan plans to create a US$500 million assistance package to fund three Vietnamese development projects, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said in talks with Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in Ha Noi yesterday.
|Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung (left) receives Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Ha Noi yesterday in his first trip to Southeast Asia since becoming Japan's leader. — VNA/VNS Photo Duc Tam
The specific projects had not been decided but would likely be in trade, investment and infrastructure, said Yutaka Yokoi, Japan's Director General for Press and Public Diplomacy of Foreign Affairs.
During the talks, Dung congratulated Abe on his first trip to Southeast Asia after becoming Japan's Prime Minister, with Viet Nam as the first stop on the journey. He also spoke highly of his counterpart's efforts to elevate the two countries' ties to a strategic partnership in order to bring about peace and prosperity in Asia.
Abe, who took office last month after a conservative Liberal Democratic Party landslide electoral victory, affirmed that Japan would continue working with Viet Nam to develop their strategic partnership for peace and prosperity in Asia.
The Japanese PM vowed to actively assist Viet Nam in realising its national industrialisation and modernisation goals by providing official development assistance. He also pledged to continue working with Viet Nam to implement the country's national industrialisation strategy under the Viet Nam–Japan Co-operation Framework until 2020 with a vision towards 2030.
Both leaders said they hoped that the visit would lift Viet Nam-Japan relations to a new height and result in many practical as well as symbolic achievements, such as the exchange of high-ranking leaders, closer cooperation among ministries and departments and more dialogues between the two sides.
They agreed to work together to implement economic cooperation agreements reached by the two countries' senior leaders - especially large-scale infrastructure projects - and to promote Japanese investment in Viet Nam and create a favourable investment and business environment for Japanese firms in the country.
Moving on to international and regional issues of mutual concern, both sides agreed to enhance the links between Japan and ASEAN countries. Dung said Viet Nam would closely co-ordinate with Japan to organise activities to celebrate the 40th anniversary of ASEAN–Japan dialogue relations.
The talks kicked off the 2013 Viet Nam–Japan Friendship Year, which both countries will observe with a wide array of activities.
The Japanese PM also met yesterday with General Secretary of the Communist Party of Viet Nam (CPV) Nguyen Phu Trong and President Truong Tan Sang.
Trong said that Viet Nam aimed to build its friendship and strategic partnership with Japan not only for the benefit of the two peoples, but also for peace, stability and prosperity in the region and the world.
Trong suggested the Japanese government and people further assist the country in its economic restructuring and growth model renewal process.
Abe, in turn, pledged to enhance bilateral ties, adding that the Japanese government would work with Viet Nam to implement agreements signed by the two countries' high-ranking leaders in order to further improve the nations' strategic partnership.
He echoed the General Secretary's wish for enhanced cooperation and coordination between the two sides for peace, stability and prosperity in the region and the world.
The biggest success resulting from the nations' bilateral diplomatic ties was political trust, President Sang said, which made it easier for the two countries to implement economic and social co-operation agreements.
Sang thanked Japan for generously assisting Viet Nam despite its economic difficulties by continuing to provide official development assistance. He suggested the two countries maintain the exchange of high-ranking delegations.
He also praised Japan's stance on settling the East Sea issue, adding that Viet Nam has stated many times that disputes among regional countries should be handled in a manner in line with international law in order to promote peace, stability and development.
The President also invited the Japanese Emperor to visit Viet Nam this year to mark the 40th anniversary of the two countries' diplomatic ties.
Abe said that based on these ties, Japan and Viet Nam needed to work to reach consensus on dealing with regional and international issues, adding that he believed Viet Nam would support Japan at regional and international forums.
ASEAN member countries, including Viet Nam, should enhance co-operation programmes with Japan in order to benefit from economic development, Abe said. He pledged to do his utmost to strengthen the two countries' relationship during his term of office. — VNS