|President Truong Tan Sang receives outgoing Dutch Ambassador Joop Scheffers in Ha Noi yesterday. — VNA Photo
HA NOI (VNS) — Outgoing Dutch Ambassador Joop Scheffers said yesterday that the Netherlands and Viet Nam would come even closer in the future after rapid progress in ties during the past five years.
The diplomat, who was given a formal farewell by President Truong Tan Sang in Ha Noi, said Viet Nam was an important partner and received priority in developmental assistance for agriculture, water management and education. He also noted co-operation in shipbuilding.
Sang said Viet Nam hoped the Netherlands would support Viet Nam's early signing of a free-trade agreement with the European Union. He said this would help further trade between Viet Nam and the Netherlands - and the EU as a whole.
Sang also updated the diplomat on developments in the East Sea since China illegally positioned its oil rig near the Paracel Islands early in May. He confirmed Viet Nam's consistent stance of solving these disputes by peaceful means on the basis of international law, asking the Netherlands for its support.
On the same day, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc hosted a reception to say farewell to outgoing US Ambassador David Shear.
Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai also received Panamanian Ambassador Eduardo Antonio, who has ended his term in Viet Nam. — VNS