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Viet Nam eyes increased ties with Belgium

Update: January, 21/2014 - 09:16
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung meets Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Johan Vande Lanotte in Ha Noi yesterday.— VNA/VNS Photo Duc Tam

HA NOI (VNS)— Viet Nam wishes to expand diplomatic ties and economic opportunities with Belgium, said Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung while receiving Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Johan Vande Lanotte in Ha Noi yesterday.

Dung hailed this year as a key milestone in Viet Nam – Belgium relations as it marks the 40th anniversary of their diplomatic ties.

He vowed to offer support to Belgian investors in Viet Nam in order to assist two-way trade.

The Government of Viet Nam has been working to better manage and effectively use official development assistance (ODA) funded by Belgium, Dung said, adding that he hopes for Belgium's continued support in the future.

Dung also suggested the Belgians support negotiations on the Viet Nam-European Union (EU) free trade agreement and recognise Viet Nam as a market economy.

Lanotte made it clear that Belgium wants to improve ties with Viet Nam, particularly in trade and investment. Belgian investors are keen to expand investment in Viet Nam, especially in the Dinh Vu industrial zone in the northern port city of Hai Phong.

He said Belgium is ready to provide Viet Nam with a springboard for European markets and foster joint work in high technology, cosmology, satellites and ODA.

Lanotte also said Belgium is urging the EU to conclude free trade agreement negotiations so it can be signed as soon as possible, which he said will pave the way for development opportunities, especially in logistics, which is a strength of the European nation.

Earlier, Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai and his Belgian counterpart Lanotte also met in Ha Noi as they agreed to forge bilateral co-operation in various fields, especially transport, environment, education and healthcare. — VNS

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