Czech Republic a priority partner: PM Chính

April 21, 2023 - 16:47
During the meeting, Prime Minister Chính affirmed Việt Nam's commitment to strengthening relationships with traditional friends, with the Czech Republic regarded as a priority partner.
Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính and Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Petr Fiala hold talks in Hà Nội on Friday. VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang

HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính and Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala agreed during their talks on Friday morning to enhance cooperation between their two countries across all sectors to achieve a trade turnover of US$1 billion within the next two years.

At the invitation of Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính, Czech PM Fiala started an official visit to Việt Nam from April 20-22. The two Prime Ministers held talks following an official welcome ceremony.

During the meeting, PM Chính affirmed Việt Nam's commitment to strengthening relationships with traditional friends, with the Czech Republic regarded as a priority partner.

He noted that the visit of PM Fiala was of great significance, taking the excellent friendship and multi-faceted cooperation between the two countries to a new level of development.

PM Fiala expressed his pleasure at visiting Việt Nam for the first time and extended sincere thanks to PM Chính and the Vietnamese people for the warm welcome accorded to his delegation.

He said the Czech Republic's strong commitment to the traditional friendship relationship with Việt Nam, which has a history of more than 70 years, and also affirmed that the Czech Republic considers Việt Nam to be its most important partner in Southeast Asia and hopes to foster cooperative relations with Việt Nam in all fields.

The two Prime Ministers expressed delight at the positive progress in their bilateral relations despite the pandemic context. They emphasised the significant potential for cooperation while agreeing on specific measures to enhance cooperation between their countries across all sectors.

In terms of economy and trade, both leaders welcomed the growth in bilateral trade turnover, which reached US$848 million in 2022 after two years of implementing the EU-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA). They set a target of reaching a trade turnover of $1 billion in the next one or two years by effectively implementing several measures.

Those are fully implementing the EVFTA agreement, improving the effectiveness of the Joint Committee mechanism on economic cooperation, and encouraging Czech businesses to invest in Việt Nam, particularly in areas where the Czech Republic has the expertise, such as automobile manufacturing, digital transformation, renewable energy, environment, and infrastructure.

The leaders also agreed to create favourable conditions for Vietnamese agricultural and aquatic products to enter the Czech market. PM Chính requested the Czech Republic's support in pushing other EU countries to ratify the EU-Việt Nam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA). At the same time, Czech PM Fiala expressed his interest in expanding Czech investment and business in Việt Nam.

The two leaders also agreed to enhance cooperation in security, defence, culture, education and training, labour, science-technology, transportation, tourism, and other areas. The two sides will consider a plan to open cultural centres in each country and direct flights to promote investment, tourism, and people-to-people exchanges.

Both leaders discussed regional and international issues of mutual concern and pledged to closely coordinate and support each other at international forums and organisations. They also support the peaceful settlement of disputes in the East Sea following international law, particularly the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS 1982).

Finally, PM Chính thanked the Czech Government for creating favourable conditions for the Vietnamese community to integrate and live stably in the Czech Republic and expressed confidence that the Vietnamese community will continue to play a vital role in developing friendship and cooperation between the two countries.

At the talks, the leaders witnessed the signing of cooperation documents in criminal mutual legal assistance, investment, and education. VNS