Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Phạm Bình Minh arrived in the United Kingdom on Tuesday to start an official two-day visit to the country at the invitation of Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Jeremy Hunt.—VNA/VNS Photo Ngự Bình
LONDON — Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Phạm Bình Minh arrived in the United Kingdom on Tuesday to start an official two-day visit to the country at the invitation of Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Jeremy Hunt.
Minh had a meeting on Tuesday with Secretary of State for International Trade Liam Fox, during which the two sides acknowledged positive growth in trade and investment ties in recent years.
Two-way trade reached US$6 billion in 2017, up 11 per cent from 2016, while total UK investment in Việt Nam climbed to $3.71 billion, putting the UK in 15th position among the 129 countries and territories investing in the country.
Minh said he believed Brexit would not create negative impacts on trade and investment ties between Việt Nam and the UK. He asked the UK to continue backing Việt Nam’s bid to enhance ties with the European Union and advocating the early signing of the EU-Việt Nam free trade agreement.
The two sides welcomed the acceleration of negotiations on a bilateral free trade deal in order to further intensify trade and investment ties and co-operation after Brexit, thus contributing to deepening the Việt Nam-UK strategic partnership.
Fox appreciated Vietnam’s role in Asia-Pacific and expressed the wish to maintain and expand economic and trade relations with Việt Nam. He affirmed that in its Global Britain strategy announced in 2017, the UK gave priority to enhancing economic co-operation with important partners, including Việt Nam.
Minh also asked the UK to continue helping Việt Nam access capital from its Prosperity Fund to improve the business environment and cope with climate change.
Earlier the same day, Minh had a meeting with Viscount Astor, who presented the Vietnamese guest with a special issue on Việt Nam published by First Magazine on the occasion of the 45th anniversary of Việt Nam-UK diplomatic ties.
During the visit, Minh also had a working session with executives of several big British groups. He took the occasion to announce Việt Nam’s resolve and efforts to build an action-oriented, innovative government of integrity. — VNS