|Vietnamese Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính had a telephone conversation with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on May 19. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang|
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Phạm Minh Chính held phone talks with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau on Wednesday to discuss measures to promote bilateral ties and the two nations' COVID-19 response.
Trudeau said Canada attaches importance to friendship with Việt Nam and wishes to lift bilateral comprehensive partnership to a new height.
Speaking highly of Việt Nam’s role and position in the international arena, reflected via its position as ASEAN Chair 2020 and a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the 2020-2021 tenure, Trudeau committed to fostering strong co-operation in trade, development and national defence.
He vowed to continue assisting Việt Nam and regional countries in access to COVID-19 vaccines via mechanisms such as ACT Accelerator, COVAX Facility and ASEAN’s COVID-19 response fund.
PM Chính congratulated Canada on its successful fight against the pandemic. He thanked the Canadian government and people for providing practical support for Việt Nam via a gift of 120,000 N95 masks, CA$3.5 million for ASEAN’s COVID-19 response fund and a relief package worth CA$700,000 to help Việt Nam's central region overcome natural disasters.
As the two countries will soon celebrate the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties (1973-2023), Chính suggested focusing on anti-pandemic work, with Canada facilitating Việt Nam’s access to COVID-19 vaccines and offering mutual support in consular work and citizen protection.
He proposed enhancing dialogue mechanisms such as deputy ministerial-level political consultation and bilateral defence consultation, as well as stepping up the establishment of the Joint Committee on Economy and Trade to raise two-way trade to US$8 billion in the next two years from $5 billion.
The Vietnamese leader said the two countries’ enterprises should tap opportunities within the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and encourage Canada to diversify investment in Việt Nam, particularly in fields of Canada’s strength such as finance, innovation, sustainable agriculture, environmental clean-up, and clean energy.
Apart from fostering relations among localities and educational ties, he asked Canada to help the more than 20,000 Vietnamese students impacted by COVID-19 and the rest of the Vietnamese community living and working in the country.
The two sides agreed to increase education ties, technology transfer and investment in pharmaceuticals and vaccines in Việt Nam. The Canadian PM pledged to assist Việt Nam in climate change response and sustainable development, particularly in the Mekong Delta and coastal regions.
They also discussed regional and global issues, including the East Sea issue, and agreed to continue working closely together at regional and global multilateral forums such as the United Nations, APEC, ASEAN and La Francophonie. — VNS