|Việt Nam’s Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc (left) welcomes his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen on his official visit to Việt Nam. — VNA/VNS Photo Thống Nhất|
HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam has always prioritised boosting economic co-operation with Cambodia for the benefit of their people and businesses, and to support the development of each nation, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has said.
PM Phúc made the statement yesterday while holding talks with Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen, who has been on an official visit to Việt Nam from December 6-8.
Congratulating Hun Sen and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) on their victory in the election of the sixth National Assembly, Phúc said the Cambodian leader’s visit helped create impetus for bilateral relations.
Asserting the importance of consolidating friendship to maintain a peaceful and stable environment, the two leaders agreed to organise ceremonies in both nations to mark the 40th anniversary of Cambodia’s victory over the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime (January 7, 1979-2019).
They expressed delight at the development of bilateral relations in recent years, with the regular exchange of meetings and visits by high-level leaders, sectors and border-sharing localities.
Two-way trade has made great strides in 2018, with the figure estimated to hit US$4.5 billion for the whole year. Việt Nam continues to be one of the top 10 investors in the neighbouring country, registering some $3 billion in more than 200 projects. Việt Nam is the second biggest source of international visitors to Cambodia with more than 500,000 arrivals.
PM Phúc suggested accelerating the implementation of a framework agreement connecting the two economies signed in 2017, enhancing co-operation in transport, tourism, telecommunications and banking, as well as putting border markets in Cambodia’s Tbong Khmum province into use soon.
Both leaders called for co-ordination to match Cambodia’s ‘Quadrangle-Development Strategy’, while calling for efforts to outline policies to increase Vietnamese investments in Cambodia and vice versa.
The two sides applauded efforts made by Việt Nam’s Ministry of Industry and Trade and Cambodia’s Ministry of Commerce to complete negotiations on the Border Trade Agreement and sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on the results.
They expressed their belief the two countries will reach the target of $5 billion by 2020.
The leaders agreed to enhance ties in education-training, agro-forestry-aquaculture, culture-arts and people-to-people exchange.
Hun Sen thanked Việt Nam for its provision of scholarships to Cambodian students and government personnel to study in Việt Nam, stressing his country’s development over the last 40 years cannot be separated from the assistance of the Vietnamese Government and people.
They reached a consensus on shaping bilateral relations under the motto ‘good neighbourliness, traditional friendship, and comprehensive cooperation and long-term sustainability’, adding that ties will be deepened via visits and exchange of delegations, as well as the existing 22 dialogue and co-operation mechanisms.
The two Prime Ministers agreed to enhance the efficiency of defence-security co-operation, not to let hostile forces use their countries’ territories to harm the other nation’s security and to work together to prevent crime.
They also voiced their desire to legalise 84 per cent of the border demarcation and marker planting-related work in 2019, towards building a border of peace, friendship, cooperation and development.
They said the two sides would work together to assure the legal status of and support Vietnamese-Cambodians to have stable lives in Cambodia.
Regarding regional and global issues, the two leaders agreed on the need to maintain peace, security and stability in the region, affirming the two countries will co-ordinate to continue building the ASEAN Community.
They also pledged to promote co-operation within the Cambodia-Laos- Việt Nam Development Triangle and the Greater Mekong Sub-region to narrow the development gap and sustainably use Mekong water resources.
In the immediate future, the two countries will work together in 2020 when Việt Nam takes over the ASEAN Chairmanship and Cambodia will host the ASEM Summit.
Immediately after the talks, the PMs witnessed the signing of five co-operation deals, including a government-level MoU on Việt Nam-Cambodia Transport Cooperation Strategy for 2018-2025 with a vision to 2030; MoUs on the completion of negotiations of the border trade agreement and education cooperation; the minutes on the completion of 84 per cent of the border demarcation and marker planting work in the field and future plans for the work; and an agreement on the implementation of a project using Viet Nam’s non-refundable aid capital for Cambodia to build a number of items in the community-based voluntary drug detoxification centre project in Preah Sihanouk Province.
Afterwards, PM Phúc and his Cambodian counterpart Hun Sen held a joint press conference. — VNS