Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc (R) Secretary of State of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Portugal Teresa Ribeiro in Hà Nội on November 23. — VNA/VNS Photo Thống Nhất
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc suggested that Việt Nam and Portugal continue promoting their traditional relationship that started 500 years ago since the first Portuguese arrived in Việt Nam.
He gave a reception for Secretary of State of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of Portugal Teresa Ribeiro in Hà Nội on November 23.
The PM expressed his hope that the the two countries will exchange their business delegations to explore each other’s investment co-operation opportunities.
He also called on Portugal to push the European Union to sign and ratify the EU–Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) to facilitate the economic-trade relations between the two countries.
Việt Nam – Portugal trade exchange stood at US$350 million in 2016, the PM said, noting that the figure is below the two countries’ potential.
For her part, the Portuguese Secretary said the two sides have signed a number of agreements and continued realising these documents, with a focus on economic and trade relations.
The Portuguese side has spoken with Việt Nam’s Ministry of Planning and Investment about measures to promote economic co-operation, she said, affirming that Portuguese firms are interested in Việt Nam, particularly in tourism and hotels, renewable energy and water management.
She expressed her belief that the EVFTA will be signed in 2018, opening up a new chapter for the Việt Nam – Portugal relationship.
Business ties with Japan, RoK
Việt Nam wants firms from Japan, and especially Osaka, to expand operations in the country, particularly in farm produce processing and consumption, support industry, health care and technological transfer, said Prime Minister Phúc.
During a reception in Hà Nội on November 23 for President of the Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Hiroshi Ozaki, the PM described Japan as Việt Nam’s leading economic partner, the largest supplier of official development assistance, the second largest investor and the fourth largest trade partner.
He pledged to direct ministries, agencies and localities to offer all possible support to Japanese businesses in any field of their demand and in any locality.
The host suggested that the Osaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry work closely with the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry to further promote business partnerships in localities, adding that Việt Nam encourages Japanese and Osaka enterprises to become strategic shareholders that actively join equitisation of State-owned enterprises in the country.
Ozaki, for his part, said firms from Osaka want to seek opportunities in advanced and eco-friendly technologies, urban development and energy, and are willing to partner with Việt Nam in fields of strength such as exploitation and processing of aquatic products, health care and tourism.
Receiving the Chairman of the SK Group from the Republic of Korea Chey Tae-won on the same day, PM Phúc hailed the group for joining in the equitisation of the State-owned enterprises in Việt Nam and committed all possible support to them during the process.
He suggested that SK Group join a joint investment fund to support small and medium-sized enterprises in Việt Nam, especially start-ups. The PM hoped that SK Group would continue assisting Việt Nam in human resources development, semi-conductor industry and key infrastructure construction.
Chey, in reply, wished to extend investment in Việt Nam, adding that SK Group is strong in green and eco-friendly industry. He proposed that Việt Nam should build a strong data platform to adapt to the Fourth Industrial Revolution as well as improve workforce quality. — VNS