|National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung welcomed and held talks with Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Urban Ahlin during his official visit to Viet Nam yesterday. — VNS Photo Nhan Sang
HA NOI (VNS) — National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung welcomed and held talks with Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Urban Ahlin during his official visit to Viet Nam yesterday.
Valuing the speaker's visit and presence at the 132nd Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly, Hung believed that the visit would open up new opportunities for co-operation between the two sides.
Viet Nam remembered the valuable goodwill and support from Sweden during the country's previous struggle for liberation and current development process, particularly Sweden's provision of aid for sustainable development, and wished to enhance bilateral co-operation to a deeper and more practical level, he stated.
Viet Nam's NA was willing to co-ordinate closely with the Swedish Parliament across sectors, he said, suggesting that Sweden intensify its co-operation with and support for Viet Nam in clean and renewable energies, transportation, financial-banking services and health, as well as working with Viet Nam to raise bilateral trade from the current US$1.2 billion per year.
The top legislator also asked Sweden to back the signing of a free trade agreement between Viet Nam and the European Union.
Speaker Ahlin highlighted Viet Nam's socio-economic development, especially in poverty reduction, saying that his country would continue to provide aid for Viet Nam and collaborate in healthcare, infrastructure, energy use and environmental protection.
Sweden was also willing to support Viet Nam in institutional reform, enhancing democracy and ensuring human rights, he said.
At the talks, both leaders agreed that trade co-operation has yet to meet its potential, calling on Swedish enterprises to expand their investments in Viet Nam.
They also reached a consensus on considering the establishment of a friendship parliamentarians' group to boost the partnership between the two legislative bodies.
|Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung meets with Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Urban Ahlin in Ha Noi yesterday. — Photo VNA
Apart from co-operation on economy, trade and investment, Viet Nam and Sweden should work more together on climate change, health care and building a law-governed State in Viet Nam, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung said.
During a meeting with Speaker of the Swedish Parliament Urban Ahlin in Ha Noi yesterday, Dung said the two countries should continue co-ordinating at multilateral forums and in international organisations.
Ahlin said he was impressed by Viet Nam's successful hosting of the IPU-132, as well as its shift from a poor country devastated by war to a middle-income country.
He said he was pleased that official direct assistance from Sweden contributed to the development of Viet Nam, adding that his country wanted to work with Viet Nam on trade and investment.
He revealed that this May a delegation of Swedish enterprises would visit Viet Nam to explore business opportunities.
Sweden strongly supported the signing of a bilateral free trade agreement between Viet Nam and the EU, Ahlin said. Sweden would also help Viet Nam during its building of a law-governed State, and talk openly with the country about democracy, human rights and corruption prevention, he said. — VNS