|Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính meets French President Emmanuel Macron. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính had a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron and attended a banquet hosted by the French President on Thursday (French time).
During the meeting, Macron welcomed the official visit to France by PM Chính during his first trip to Europe as Prime Minister of Việt Nam. He spoke highly of Việt Nam’s role and position in the region, and expressed his wish to further deepen the Việt Nam-France strategic partnership.
The French President thanked Việt Nam for giving medical masks to France when the COVID-19 pandemic broke out in 2020, and announced that France will provide Việt Nam with an additional 400,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine through a bilateral channel and 970,000 other doses through the COVAX mechanism.
PM Chính thanked France for the support in vaccines and medical supplies and said he hoped the European country will continue to help Việt Nam in medical supplies and the production technology of medicine for COVID-19 treatment.
The two leaders hailed the effective Việt Nam-France cooperation in many fields and agreed to build annual plans with specific tasks to further deepen the two countries’ strategic partnership.
The French side said it is ready to coordinate with Việt Nam to prepare for the 12th conference on localities’ cooperation in Hà Nội at the end of next year.
The two sides noted the need to further strengthen the pillar of economic, trade and investment cooperation in the Việt Nam-France strategic partnership. They agreed upon directions and measures to further facilitate trade exchange, and accelerate cooperative projects in key fields.
The French President appreciated bilateral cultural exchange and proposed that the two countries continue to facilitate the activities of the French Institute in Việt Nam and the Vietnam Culture Centre in France.
PM Chính shared the French leader’s view, and asked France to maintain and increase cooperative projects in healthcare. He hailed the programme on teaching French in Việt Nam, adding that he hoped France will create more favourable conditions for the exchange of pupils and students, increase scholarships and train more public administrative personnel for Việt Nam.
He appreciated France’s coordination with Việt Nam at multilateral forums, particularly during the time Việt Nam serves as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council. He asked France to work as a bridge to promote ties between Việt Nam, as well as the ASEAN, and the EU, particularly when France assumes the Presidency of the EU in January 2022.
The two sides agreed to actively implement and optimise the Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement and push the process of ratifying the Việt Nam-EU Investment Protection Agreement.
President Macron said France is willing to promote cooperation with Việt Nam in developing sustainable fisheries, and pledged to study and work with the European Commission on the early removal of the yellow card against Việt Nam’s aquatic products.
Discussing international and regional issues of shared concern, the French President said France’s Indo-Pacific strategy attaches importance to ASEAN’s centrality and the ensuring of security, safety and freedom of maritime and aviation. He stressed his support of the settlement of disputes by peaceful means based on international law, including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, particularly concerning the East Sea issue.
PM Chính hailed France’s role and position in the EU and the international arena, and welcomed countries, including France, to bring into play their role and responsibility to contribute to common peace, stability and prosperity in the region.
The two leaders agreed to issue a joint statement on the occasion of PM Chính’s visit to France.
PM Chính conveyed invitations to visit Việt Nam from Party General Secretary Nguyễn Phú Trọng and President Nguyễn Xuân Phúc to President Macron, who accepted the invitation with pleasure. — VNS