Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc and his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison held telephone talks on Thursday. —VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc and his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison had a telephone talk on Thursday to discuss bilateral relations as well as regional and international issues of shared concern.
The Australian PM congratulated Việt Nam on outstanding achievements the country gained in 2020 to become a rare model in COVID-19 pandemic control and socio-economic development amid the worst global economic depression in decades.
He believes that the upcoming 13th National Congress of the Communist Party of Việt Nam (CPV) will be a success. He also congratulated Việt Nam on fulfilling the role of ASEAN Chair in 2020 with the successful signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
He thanked Việt Nam for its support in turning the ASEAN-Australia Summit into an annual mechanism.
Morrison hopes the Việt Nam-Australia relations will be elevated to a strategic partnership in 2023 on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the bilateral diplomatic relations.
Phúc suggested that the two sides optimise their advantages and potential of cooperation so as to become one of the top 10 trade partners of each other and double two-way investment flow, thus supporting the post-pandemic recovery. He mentioned the need to soon finalise and sign the Australia-Vietnam Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy (EEES), while promoting cooperation in the framework of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and RCEP, thus further boosting trade and minimise disputes.
He proposed that Australia continue giving technical support to Việt Nam and further open its market for Vietnamese agricultural products such as fresh whole shrimp, longan, passion fruit, rambutan and star apple.
Việt Nam hopes that Australia will encourage large firms to invest in telecommunications, infrastructure, hi-tech agriculture, finance-banking, mining, energy, manufacturing, education, and tourism in Việt Nam, while increasing the provision of ODA to Việt Nam, focusing on infrastructure, agricultural, rural and mountainous development, poverty reduction, climate change response, and high-quality human resource training.
Both sides should also strengthen cooperation in military medicine, cyber security, and defence industry, PM Phúc told the Australian government leader, asking the Australian side to continue to create favourable conditions for the Vietnamese community to settle in the country while keeping the Vietnamese cultural characteristics and language.
The two leaders affirmed that friendship and mutual understanding and trust would be a strong motivation for more effective, intensive and extensive cooperation between the two countries.
They agreed on the need to continue deepening economic connectivity between the two countries, and pledged to provide Việt Nam with more resources and support so that the country can access effective and safe vaccines.
He also affirmed continued support for Việt Nam in performing the role of a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2021, and in conducting UN peacekeeping operations.
Morrison confirmed that Australia would attend a conference on women’s role in UN peacekeeping in 2021, and would work closely with Việt Nam in implementing economic development programmes in the Mekong sub-region. Australia would be willing to engage in tripartite cooperation mechanisms in the region involving Việt Nam, Australia, Laos and Cambodia, he added.
The two PMs also agreed to collaborate in bolstering the ASEAN-Australia partnership to make the ties more efficient and strengthening collaboration in international and regional mechanisms and forums.
They reiterated the significance of strengthening cooperation and maintaining peace, stability, and maritime and aviation security, safety and freedom, as well as ensuring legitimate rights and interest as stated in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982. They underlined the need to settle disputes on the basis of international law, including the UNCLOS 1982, fully and effectively implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea and work to achieve an effective Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) in line with international law, including the UNCLOS 1982.
The Vietnamese PM lauded the outcomes of the Việt Nam visit by PM Morrison in 2019, and invited the Australian leader to visit Việt Nam again. PM Morrison accepted the invitation with pleasure, while expressing hope to welcome PM Phúc to his country in the near future. — VNS