Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc welcomes his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Giang
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc and his Malaysian counterpart Mahathir Mohamad agreed to further deepen the Việt Nam-Malaysia strategic partnership during their talks in Hà Nội on Tuesday.
The talks took place right after a welcome ceremony for the visiting Malaysian PM at the Presidential Palace in Hà Nội.
Phúc congratulated Malaysia, under the leadership of PM Mohamad, on sustaining its stable growth and global competitiveness, towards the goal of “Shared Prosperity 2030”.
Mohamad, for his part, affirmed that Malaysia always attached importance to strengthening the strategic partnership with Việt Nam, which it considers a close neighbour and trustworthy partner in the region, especially within the framework of the ASEAN Community.
Both sides agreed to further facilitate visits at all levels, strengthen cooperation via the party and National Assembly channels, and make effective use of bilateral cooperation mechanisms.
The Vietnamese PM affirmed that the Communist Party of Việt Nam wanted to further reinforce ties with the ruling Pakatan Harapan (Alliance of Hope) of Malaysia.
The two sides welcomed the exchange of letters between the two legislatures on the establishment of the Việt Nam–Malaysia friendship parliamentarians’ group, and committed support for the group in working to raise mutual understanding, making further contributions to ties between the two law-making bodies and the two nations.
They vowed to sign an action programme to realise the bilateral strategic partnership for 2020–25, focusing on boosting economic ties, deepening strategic co-operation in national defence and security, and strengthening partnership in marine co-operation, innovation, science, education and labour.
They consented to promptly launch bilateral defence mechanisms, including a high-level committee on defence co-operation and naval consultations, while stepping up the signing of co-operation documents such as an MoU on defence co-operation, MoU on the establishment of joint patrols and a hotline at sea, MoU on law co-operation, agreements on the prevention and control of human trafficking, and the transfer of sentenced persons.
Host and guest shared experience in the fight against corruption and agreed to extend ties between agencies concerned, considering it one of the pillar fields to build a facilitating, transparent and action-minded government.
They shared the view that the economic, trade and investment relationship has been a bright spot in bilateral ties. Two-way trade between the two nations hit US$11.5 billion last year, up over 13 per cent annually. Malaysia is the eighth largest investor in Việt Nam with around 600 projects worth over $12 billion.
In order to raise two-way trade to $15 billion, PM Mohamad promised to increase investment in Việt Nam in fields using modern technology and with high added value, and back Việt Nam’s exports to Malaysia, particularly agro-forestry-fisheries and Halal products.
The two sides highlighted the significance of collaboration in improving workforce quality and expanding cultural ties and people-to-people exchange. The Malaysian government would continue ensuring legitimate interests and creating favourable conditions for Vietnamese workers living in Malaysia.
On marine co-operation, the two PMs promised to share experience in building strategies for marine economy, marine science and sea energy. They welcomed the fact that the two sides had reached agreement on the content of an MoU on co-operation in legal enforcement and search and rescue at sea, a step towards the signing of the document.
They agreed that two countries would work closely together to address issues regarding seized fishermen and fishing vessels in a humanitarian spirit and in accordance with international law.
As regards regional and global strategic and security issues of shared interest, Mahathir affirmed that Malaysia strongly supported Việt Nam as Chair of ASEAN in 2020 and as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council in the 2020–21 tenure.
He said Malaysia would co-ordinate closely with Việt Nam to promote the building of an ASEAN Community of unity and uphold the bloc’s central role in the regional architecture for the sake of peace, stability, co-operation and development based on rules.
The two PMs agreed that as two neighbours bordering the East Sea with associated security and interests, Việt Nam and Malaysia would closely co-operate with ASEAN to ensure peace, stability, security, safety and freedom of navigation and overflight in the East Sea.
Expressing deep concerns over the recent developments in the East Sea, they stressed the importance of settling disputes by peaceful means in accordance with international law and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, with respect for diplomatic and legal process, refraining from the use of and threat to use force, avoiding militarisation, fully and seriously implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and striving for the early finalisation of an effective and legally-binding Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).
Following the talks, the leaders witnessed the signing of a letter of intent on the signing of an MoU on co-operation in legal enforcement and search and rescue at sea, and the exchange of letters on the establishment of Malaysia–Việt Nam friendship parliamentarians’ group. — VNS