Deputy Prime Minister Phạm Bình Minh (right) had talks with the visiting Australian Minister of Trade, Tourism and Investment Dan Tehan on Tuesday in Hà Nội. — VNA/VNS Photo Lâm Khánh
HÀ NỘI — Deputy Prime Minister Phạm Bình Minh said he hoped Australia will become one of Việt Nam’s ten largest trade partners and vice versa during a reception for visiting Australian Minister of Trade, Tourism and Investment Dan Tehan in Hà Nội on Tuesday.
Welcoming Tehan, Minh spoke highly of Australia’s response to COVID-19 and its adaptation to the “new normal,” resulting in economic recovery and heightened position on the international stage.
He expressed his delight at the strong development of the Việt Nam-Australia strategic partnership in multiple fields, particularly the economy, trade and investment - the focus of the bilateral strategic partnership.
He cited that two-way trade rocketed by more than 40 per cent in the first half of 2021 compared to the previous year.
Given that both countries are signatories to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), he hoped that Việt Nam and Australia would be among the ten largest trade partners of each other.
The Deputy PM suggested Australia give Vietnamese shrimp balls and passion fruit access to its market while showing Việt Nam's interest in importing ore, coal, iron and steel, and rare earth from the country.
He also appreciated Australia’s role in the Asia-Pacific region and its stance in maintaining regional peace, security and stability, particularly in the East Sea, in line with international law and the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982.
He moved on to thank the Government of Australia for supporting Việt Nam in its roles as ASEAN Chair 2020 and a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council and pledging to provide the Southeast Asian nation with AU$40 million (US$29.9 million) and 1.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine Astra Zeneca manufactured in Australia to aid its COVID-19 fight.
He hoped for Australia’s continued support for COVAX vaccine-sharing facilities and for poor and developing countries to access vaccine supplies.
Also pleased to see the growing bilateral ties, Minister Tehan said Australia was committed to cooperating with Việt Nam in tackling challenges from the pandemic.
He asked the Government of Việt Nam to back the Australia-Việt Nam Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy (EEES) and continue fostering the bilateral trade and investment relations, with the focus placed on food security, water resources and high technology.
Tehan is on his first visit to Việt Nam, one of the destinations during his two-week tour of five countries, also including Singapore, the Republic of Korea, Japan and the US. These are Australia’s important partners, accounting for around a quarter of its goods and service export turnover. — VNS