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Viet Nam seeks to expand ties with the US

Update: June, 03/2014 - 08:52
President Truong Tan Sang receives US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker during her visit to Viet Nam. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyen Khang
HA NOI (VNS) — President Truong Tan Sang told US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker yesterday that Viet Nam hopes to elevate co-operation between the two countries in all fields, especially economics, trade and investment, in a practical and effective manner.

Receiving Pritzker in Ha Noi, Sang expressed his pleasure at growing bilateral relations, noting that the US had become one of Viet Nam's leading partners.

For her part, Pritzker informed the President that many US enterprises and corporations wanted to expand their operations in Viet Nam, especially after the Trans-Pacific Partnership is signed.

Regarding the East Sea situation, Pritzker re-affirmed the US's opposition to China's provocative acts and support for peaceful measures to resolve the conflict.

President Sang welcomed the US Commerce Secretary's visit, saying it would boost comprehensive partnership between both sides. He remarked that since the normalisation of ties between Viet Nam and the US, bilateral relations had come a long way.

Last year, two-way trade hit US$30 billion, 50 times the figure in 1994, when relations were normalised.

The US exported more than US$5 billion worth of goods to Viet Nam in 2013, up eight per cent over the previous year, while importing US$24.6 billion worth of goods, a year-on-year increase of 21.6 per cent.

Sang said he hoped Viet Nam and the US would facilitate implementation of the joint statement that he and President Barack Obama signed in July last year.

He also thanked the US Congress and Government for their timely opposition to China's illegal placement of an oil rig in Vietnamese waters.

He called on the international community to protest China's recent actions including ramming of vessels belonging to Viet Nam's coast guards as well as its use of army planes and warships to threaten Viet Nam's law enforcement officials and fishermen.

The President reiterated the utmost restraint that Viet Nam has shown thus far. Viet Nam wants to work with all relevant parties to find a solution and ensure peace, stability and development in the region.

Meeting with PM

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung meets US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker in Ha Noi yesterday. — VNA/VNS Photo Duc Tam

Pritzker yesterday also met with Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.

The Prime Minister said both countries should optimize their respective advantages in order to fulfill the substantial co-operation potential that exists between the two countries and take two-way trade to more impressive heights.

Referring to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, Dung said that once it is concluded, the deal would benefit all participating parties.

Viet Nam has taken part in the TPP negotiations in an active and responsible manner, he said.

However, as a developing country, Viet Nam hopes that the US will recognise its difficulties and accord it the necessary flexibility, contributing to the success of the negotiating process, he added.

The Prime Minister affirmed that Viet Nam will create all possible favourable conditions for foreign investors, including US businesspeople. He called on US businesses to support Viet Nam in the TPP negotiations and persuade the US government to recognise Viet Nam as a market economy. This would create favourable conditions for both sides to strengthen trade and investment relations, he said

Dung also thanked the US for voicing its opposition to China's illegal placement of a deep-sea drilling rig in Viet Nam's exclusive economic zone and continental shelf. He hoped the US would continue its objection to China's defiant breach of international law.

For her part, Pritzker said the US attaches great importance to developing ties with Viet Nam in all fields.

She said her visit, in which many leading US enterprises are participating, aims to further boost bilateral economic, trade and investment relations between the two countries.

Pritzker highly valued Viet Nam's efforts to improve its investment environment, consolidate investors' confidence, and implement its WTO commitments.

Concurring with Dung that there was room for both sides to strengthen their partnership, especially in aviation, construction and energy, Pritzker said she hopes Viet Nam will continue backing US firms' operations in Viet Nam.

She said the US will work closely with all countries party to the TPP, including Viet Nam, towards an early conclusion to negotiations.

US investors present at the meeting said they would support Viet Nam in TPP negotiations and expressed wishes that the US Government will soon acknowledge the country's market economy. — VNS

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