|Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính is welcomed by French National Assembly President Richard Ferrand. — VNA/VNS Photo
PARIS — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính spoke highly of important contributions made by the parliaments of Việt Nam and France to strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries while holding talks with French National Assembly (NA) President Richard Ferrand on Thursday morning (local time).
Chính reiterated his gratitude towards French Government for donating 400,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Việt Nam through the bilateral mechanism and one million doses through the COVAX mechanism, considering this a testament to the close relationship between the two countries.
The two leaders agreed that Việt Nam and France have a special historical relationship and cohesion in all aspects, from political relations, economic cooperation to culture, architecture, cuisine and people.
They expressed determination to deepen the Việt Nam-France Strategic Partnership in various fields such as politics, diplomacy, national defence, economy, trade, investment, culture and education.
The two sides exchanged views on regional and global issues of mutual concern, agreeing that countries should promote their responsible roles and contribute to peace, stability and shared prosperity in the region.
French NA President Richard Ferrand spoke about France's Indo-Pacific strategy and affirmed the importance of maintaining security, safety, freedom of navigation and overflight in the oceans, especially in the South China Sea (known in Việt Nam as East Sea), on the basis of compliance with the principles of international laws, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
PM Chính proposed the French NA coordinate with the French Government to effectively implement the EU-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and support the early ratification of the EU-Việt Nam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA) with an aim to maximising potential in economic, trade and investment cooperation between Việt Nam, France and EU countries.
He also proposed France support Việt Nam in promoting the European Commission to soon remove the yellow card warning on Vietnamese seafood, especially when France assumes the role of EU President in January 2022.
The Vietnamese leader thanked the French Government and NA for creating favourable conditions for the Vietnamese community living, studying and working in France, especially in the context of climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính conveyed the invitation of Vietnamese NA Chairman Vương Đình Huệ to President Richard Ferrand to visit Việt Nam.
Richard Ferrand gladly accepted the invitation and affirmed that he is ready to welcome Chairman Huệ to France.
Việt Nam-France Business Forum
During his trip to France, PM Chính delivered a speech at the Việt Nam-France Business Forum on Thursday morning (local time) and witnessed the exchanges of 29 cooperation agreement between Vietnamese ministries, organisations and enterprises with partners from France and a number of European countries.
The agreements have been signed in investment, trade, construction, planning, culture, education, training, tourism, science and technology, and innovation.
The agreements included the cooperation agreement between VinFast Company and EDF Group on supply and installation of charging equipment and provision of public charging services for individual and institutional customers of VinFast. The European Association for Electromobility (AVERE) awarded membership certificates to VinFast. Vietjet Air and Airbus Group signed a strategic cooperation agreement on supplying 184 aircraft, developing a new wide-body fleet and handing over three A330 wide-body aircrafts.
Hanoi Medical University and representatives of NG Biotech Group agreed to cooperate in research, development and technology transfer to produce 175 types of rapid tests to Việt Nam.
PM Chính called on businesses to continue their research and exchanges for deeper cooperation.
He proposed French businesses not only support Việt Nam in finance and investment, but also in building institutions, policies, and administrative reform; provide green finance, green technology; train high-quality human resources and national management science.
He emphasised that during the development process, humans are a key foundation of Việt Nam. Great potential in cooperation and investment of Việt Nam are not only from the favourable investment environment, but also from smart, dynamic, creative and friendly people.
Human development is also one of three strategic breakthroughs that the 13th Party Congress of Việt Nam determined to strive to help the nation become a high-income developed country by 2045, he said.
Meeting leaders of French groups
On the same day, PM Minh Chính had meetings with representatives of leading French groups and businesses as part of his official visit to France.
The PM met with the Chairman/CEO of TotalEnergies Patrick Pouyanné, who said his company is interested in the Vietnamese market and wants to enhance cooperation in renewable energy with the Southeast Asian nation.
Chính suggested Total further expand its investment in Việt Nam in the coming years, ensuring benefits to both sides, saying Total should take into consideration the transition towards the use of energy for sustainable development in the country.
Vietnamese authorities will hold more dialogues with businesses, including foreign firms, he said.
At a working breakfast with Chairman of the European Chamber of Commerce in Việt Nam (EuroCham) Alain Cany and leaders of major French groups, the PM called on them to cooperate with and invest in Việt Nam, and contribute opinions on the country’s policies, taking into account the trends of sustainable and low-carbon development, green transition and digital transformation.
At the meetings, Vietnamese ministers also cleared up concerns of foreign investors, and provided them with more information about the investment environment and opportunities in Việt Nam.
The French businesspeople expressed their pleasure and confidence in Việt Nam’s policies, as well as cooperation potential with the country, affirming their commitments to long-term investment in Việt Nam. — VNS