|NA Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung met with Swiss National Council (Lower House) President Ruedi Lustenberger in Berne yesterday. — VNA/VNS Photo Nhan Sang
BERNE (VNS)— National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung began his official visit to Switzerland yesterday at the invitation of President of the Swiss National Council (Lower House) Ruedi Lustenberger.
After an official welcome ceremony at the headquarters of the Swiss Parliament in Berne, Hung held talks with his host.
Highlighting the intensive development of friendship and co-operation in the past, the Vietnamese leader said Switzerland was an important economic partner in Europe
He said he hoped that Switzerland would continue encouraging its businesses to invest in Viet Nam, especially in finance, banking, insurance, high technology, chemicals and pharmaceuticals.
He thanked the Swiss Parliament and Government for their support for and provision of official development assistance (ODA) to Viet Nam
He confirmed that Switzerland's ODA capital had been used effectively in Viet Nam, actively contributing to the country's poverty reduction, rural development, environmental protection, socio-economic development, and international economic integration.
President Lustenberger congratulated Viet Nam on its socio-economic development, especially during difficult times for the world economy.
He also agreed with the promotion of bilateral co-operation in all areas.
The Swiss National Council President spoke highly of the Vietnamese National Assembly's adoption of a new constitution, describing it as an important milestone in the country's legislative work. He said it went alongside developments in building State apparatus and guaranteeing human rights.
He said that the Swiss Parliament, with its experience, was willing to assist Viet Nam in implementing the constitution.
He also noted Viet Nam's efforts to overcome the consequences of Agent Orange/dioxin, stating it needed the support of international organisations and nations.
Both host and guest agreed that the two sides should maintain the exchange of all-level delegations, especially parliamentary groups, and promote people-to-people exchanges.
Chairman Hung invited President Lustenberger to attend the 132nd Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly to be held in Viet Nam in March 2015.
Today, the top Vietnamese legislator is scheduled to meet the President of the Swiss State Council (Upper House), Hannes Germann.
Hung also met the UN's Geneva Office's Acting Head Michael Moller yesterday during his Switzerland visit to attend the 130th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly.
The NA leader affirmed that following its achievements in national construction and development, Viet Nam will continue to maintain its consistent foreign policy of expanding cooperation with other countries in the world.
During the meetings with the staff of Viet Nam's permanent mission to the UN, the Vietnamese Embassy, and Vietnamese community in Switzerland on the same day, NA Chairman Hung remarked that his visit to the country was aimed at deepening the friendship and all-round cooperation between Viet Nam's legislature and the IPU as well as boost cooperation between the two countries.
Delivering his speech at the plenary session of the 130th Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly (IPU-130) in Geneva yesterday, Chairman Hung stressed Viet Nam's stance that favours a world of peace, cooperation and prosperity. Hung also said Viet Nam backs non-proliferation of arms and fully eliminating weapons of mass destruction, especially nuclear weapons.
Viet Nam strongly condemns terrorist acts and threats all over the world, and hails the IPU for intensifying cooperation among legislatures, especially in sharing information about terrorism, he noted.
He added that the country hopes the IPU is upholding its role in ensuring and promoting democracy.
The IPU-130, from March 16-19, brought together over 700 delegates from more than 160 member countries for discussions relating to nuclear disarmament, child protection, maintenance of world peace, the IPU post-2015 action plan, and efforts to boost democracy and parliamentary roles. — VNS