BANGKOK — President Nguyễn Xuân Phúc’s freshly-concluded trip to Thailand was a success, Vietnamese Foreign Minister Bùi Thanh Sơn has said.
The President paid an official visit to Thailand and attended the 29th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting from November 16-19.
Sơn told the press that the trip has contributed to materialising the foreign policy of the 13th National Party Congress that is prioritising the comprehensive development of relations with neighbouring countries and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), including Thailand.
This is the first visit to Thailand by Phúc in his capacity as the President of Việt Nam, and also the first by a high-ranking Vietnamese leader to Thailand after the 13th National Party Congress and the COVID-19 outbreak.
The visit is of significance as it marks an important milestone in the Việt Nam-Thailand enhanced strategic partnership, creating a new impulse for the bilateral cooperation.
It also carries the message on the resolve by the two countries' leaders to make the partnership stronger, more comprehensive and more effective, the minister stressed.
President Phúc was the first foreign leader to make an official visit to Thailand ahead of the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, Sơn said, noting that Thai leaders spoke highly of the visit that was intended to create a favourable premise to elevate the bilateral ties, both bilaterally and multilaterally, in the context of the two countries working towards the 10th anniversary of the enhanced strategic partnership in 2023.
Thailand warmly and solemnly welcomed the Vietnamese delegation with a 21-gun salute.
During his visit, President Phúc held talks with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, and had meetings with King Maha Vajiralongkorn and President of the National Assembly Chuan Leekpai.
He received the Chairman of the Việt Nam - Thailand Friendship Association, visited the Vietnamese community in Thailand, and met with leaders of a number of leading Thai businesses and corporations investing in Việt Nam, among other activities.
Regarding the outcomes of the visit, Sơn said the two sides reached high consensus on orientations to promote bilateral cooperation more strongly and effectively, matching the potential, strength and demand of each country.
They will intensify all-level delegation exchange and work to effectively implement bilateral mechanisms, especially joint Cabinet meetings to be co-chaired by the two PMs.
At the end of the visit, the two sides issued a joint statement, opening up a new chapter for a stronger strategic partnership, for common peace, stability and prosperity, and signed a number of cooperation documents.
The leaders consented to enhance economic links and committed to bringing the bilateral trade to US$25 billion by 2025, making it more balanced through measures to facilitate market access and reduce trade limitations.
The visit once again affirmed that Việt Nam and Thailand are strategic, reliable partners in many regional and international issues of shared concern, Sơn said.
The two sides agreed to closely coordinate at regional and international forums, especially the United Nations, APEC, ASEAN and Mekong subregion cooperation forums.
The leaders concurred to uphold ASEAN’s common stance on the South China Sea, and maintain peace, stability, safety and freedom of navigation and aviation in the waters on the basis of respecting international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982 UNCLOS).
According to the minister, the visit has brought about pragmatic interests to the two countries, actively contributing to building a strong ASEAN Community, for peace, stability and cooperation in the region and the world.
Asked about the results of the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting, Sơn said the event, the first in-person meeting of the APEC leaders after a four-year hiatus, has created momentum for the forum.
The meeting and the joint statement issued by the leaders have carried a strong message of cooperation, dialogue and multilateralism.
The meeting has laid the foundation for the connectivity between APEC and partners and other regional forums, Sơn said.
The minister underlined that President Phúc and the Vietnamese delegation had actively and proactively contributed to all activities of the event.
Apart from a retreat session, the President attended dialogues with guests and businesspeople and delivered a speech at the APEC CEO Summit. He and representatives of ministries and agencies also had meetings with leaders of economies and leading groups in the world.
Việt Nam also actively coordinated with host Thailand and other members in preparation for the meeting, as well as the building of documents, Sơn added.
The Vietnamese delegation raised new initiatives and ideas on the development and orientations of APEC in the current challenging period, Sơn said, noting that Việt Nam’s proposals were lauded by other members and included in the documents.
Việt Nam also shared its experience in green transformation and digital transformation and major relevant policies.
Notably, Việt Nam worked together with others to create more communication channels in order to ease the differences among the APEC member economies regarding the complicated situation in the world and the region, seek a common voice and maintain their consensus, Sơn said. — VNS