|Leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum pose for a photo ahead of this year's APEC summit in Manila yesterday.— VNA/VNS Photo Nguyen Khang
MANILA (VNS) — Hosting APEC in 2017, Viet Nam vowed to work side by side with other members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in fostering regional economic integration towards the prosperity of the Asia-Pacific region, President Truong Tan Sang said yesterday.
The president made the remarks at the first plenary session of the 23rd APEC Summit in Manila, the Philippines.
The region has seen a rapid transformation, he said, speaking highly of the APEC 2015's efforts to stimulate quality development.
He called on APEC member economies to continuously foster regional economic integration towards sustainable development goals and focus their cooperation on reducing poverty, development gaps and disaster risks; ensuring food security; and developing sustainable agriculture and green tourism.
The APEC economies also need to step up economic and technical cooperation and support to improve the capability of developing members, particularly in new-generation economy and trade, the President added.
Having great potential in economy, science and technology, the APEC members and enterprises should get more involved in sub-regional and regional integration schemes, notably the ASEAN and Mekong, he noted.
Highlighting contributions of Viet Nam to strengthening APEC and regional economic integration, the state leader said Viet Nam has learned great lessons from the 30 years of the "Doi moi" (Renewal) process, which show economic growth is fueled by greater integration while the determinant of sustainable and inclusive growth is reform, particularly reforms of economic systems, human resources and infrastructure.
At the first plenary session, themed "Inclusive growth through regional economic integration", APEC leaders were firmly committed to achieving the Bogor Goals in 2020 towards the establishment of the Free Trade Agreement of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP) and developing the region as a driving force of regional and global connectivity.
They affirmed their support for multilateral trade and adopted measures to enhance quality development, reform and increase the participation of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in global markets to boost growth.
The APEC 23 Summit, themed "Building inclusive economies, building a better world", officially opened in Manila yesterday. This is the second time the Philippines has hosted the APEC Summit, with the first time being in 1996.
President meets APEC leaders
President Truong Tan Sang had bilateral meetings with leaders of some APEC member economies in Manila yesterday on the sidelines of the APEC Summit.
Meeting with Papua New Guinean Prime Minister Peter O'Neill, the leaders agreed on the need to commence negotiations soon on agreements to promote trade and investment in fields they have strength in like agriculture, rubber planting, wood processing, aquaculture, and oil and gas exploration and exploitation for early signing.
Peter O'Neill shared the view that the two sides should increase mutual support and close coordination at multilateral forums, especially in 2017 and 2018 when Viet Nam and Papua New Guinea will respectively host APEC events.
President Sang stressed that amid the current complex security and development environment, countries need to continue enhancing dialogues and making all possible efforts in conformity with international law and common norms, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
These activities are instrumental to ensuring peace, stability and navigation and aviation security and safety, he noted, stressing the necessity to settle disputes peacefully and co-operate for development in Asia-Pacific, including Southeast Asia and the East Sea.
The Papua New Guinean PM shared the same view and voiced support for Viet Nam's stance.
Congratulating Justin Trudeau on his election as the PM of Canada, the Vietnamese leader affirmed that Viet Nam has continually treasured its relations with Canada, asking both sides to work out measures boosting bilateral ties and effectively implement reached agreements.
Trudeau said Viet Nam is emerging as an important economic and trade partner of Canada, and his Government is willing to intensify the connections with Viet Nam in economics, trade, investment, politics, diplomacy, ODA and education.
The two sides expressed their belief that the execution of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement will open up bright prospects for bilateral trade activities and boost the regional and global connectivity trend. They also touched upon regional and international issues of shared concern.
During a brief meeting with US President Barack Obama on Wednesday, the two leaders expressed their delight toward the development of the Viet Nam – US relationship after 20 years of establishing diplomatic tie. The presidents agreed to promote the comprehensive partnership in the time to come.
Also on Wednesday, the President had separate meetings with Bruneian Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah, President of the Republic of Korea Park Geun-hye, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull and Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla.
The Vietnamese and Bruneian leaders concurred in strengthening cooperation in potential areas, including oil and gas. Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah spoke highly of Viet Nam's economic growth and hoped for a visit to the country to foster bilateral relations.
Meanwhile, President Sang and his counterpart Park Geun-hye rejoiced at the flourishing strategic partnership between Viet Nam and the RoK and agreed to finalise domestic procedures to put the bilateral free trade agreement into force as soon as possible, thus augmenting their trade revenue.
He reached an agreement with President Bachelet on bolstering the effectiveness of Viet Nam – Chile co-operation mechanisms and all-level delegation exchanges. The latter affirmed that her country advocates Viet Nam's organisation of APEC meetings in 2017 and will work closely with the Southeast Asian nation to successfully hold the events.
At another meeting, the Vietnamese State leader and Australian PM Turnbull consented to solidify the two countries' comprehensive partnership and work more closely at multilateral forums, especially those of ASEAN.
President Sang and Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla agreed on the need to maintain all-level delegation exchanges to reinforce their nations' strategic partnership. Jusuf Kalla also said Indonesia wants to import more rice from Viet Nam.
On the sidelines of the APEC Summit, Viet Nam and the Philippines issued a joint statement on the establishment of a strategic partnership. For the full version of the statement, please visit Viet Nam News website at vietnamnews.vn — VNS