|Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (L) and Romanian Foreign Minister Teodor Melescanu at the press conference following their talks
During the stay, Deputy PM and FM Binh Minh met with Vice Chairwoman of the Romanian Chamber of Deputies Carmen Ileana Mihalcescu and held talks with FM Teodor Melescanu. He also had a meeting with Prime Minister Viorica Dancila.
Meeting Vice Chairwoman of the Romanian Chamber of Deputies Carmen Ileana Mihalcescu, Deputy PM Minh recalled the support of Romania for Vietnam, including the training of more than 4,000 Vietnamese who are now contributing greatly to Vietnam national development and the friendship between the two nations.
He affirmed Vietnam’s hope to boost ties with Romania in all fields, particularly in economics-trade-investment and areas where the two countries can supplement each other.
Mihalcescu stated her support for developing multi-faceted cooperation, noting that the Romanian parliament advocates the early signing of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and will approve the Investment Protection Agreement after its official signing.
The two sides expressed satisfaction at the traditional friendship between the two countries over the past nearly 7 decades and the sound political-diplomatic ties, especially the two parliaments’ regular exchange of visits and close coordination at international forums.
At his talks with FM Teodor Melescanu, the Vietnamese Deputy PM and FM highlighted recent progress in bilateral economic-trade-investment partnership, saying that though still modest, it provides an important prerequisite for more cooperation in the time ahead.
Minh called for more attention to people-to-people exchange, suggesting organising cultural activities and inviting a Romanian art troupe to Vietnam’s Hue Festival in 2019. He also asked the Romanian Government to create favourable conditions for the Vietnamese community in Romania to integrate into the host country.
Minister Melescanu affirmed that Vietnam has been and is now an important partner of Romania in Asia and Southeast Asia, hailing the visit by Deputy PM Minh as being significant to boosting bilateral relations.
The two officials welcomed the positive changes in bilateral ties, but noted that economic-trade-investment relations remain modest with two-way trade reaching only US$207 million in 2017. Romania has only two investment projects in Vietnam worth US$1.2 million.
They explored the potential that can be tapped to boost the relations, including Romania’s technology and experience in power, oil and gas, mining, pharmaceuticals, agriculture and food processing, and Vietnam’s seafood, tropical fruits and textiles-garment products.
The two sides also agreed to promote collaboration in tourism and science-technology, and consider the possibility of sending Vietnam’s skilled workers to Romania to work.
They shared the view that the two countries should continue to work together in film making, organising cultural event and send delegations to attend each other’s festivals.
Romania promised to provide more scholarships for Vietnamese students and suggested that Vietnam send its young diplomats to short-term training courses in Romania.
The two officials also discussed international and regional issues, and the maintenance of regional and world peace and stability, along with the settlement of disputes by peaceful measures on the basis of respect for international law and treaties of the United Nations, including the 1982 UN Convention of the Law of the Sea.
FM Melescanu said as EU Chair in the first 6 months of 2019, Romania will support the relations between Vietnam and the EU, including the EV FTA.
Deputy PM Minh affirmed that Vietnam is willing to work to connect Romania and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and ASEAN member countries.
Following the talks, the two Foreign Ministers met the press on the outcomes of their meeting. They witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation between the diplomatic academies of the two countries.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Viorica Dancila told Deputy PM and FM Minh at their meeting that the two countries have many opportunities to upgrade their ties, especially in the fields of economics-trade-investment and science-technology. She noted that Vietnamese workers are hardworking and eager to learn, and thus will be able to meet the demand of the Romanian labour market.
Host and guest agreed that in order to lift economic-trade ties to match political-diplomatic relations between the two countries and to meet their potential and aspiration, it is necessary to remove obstacles in economic collaboration. To this purpose, they stressed the importance of the inter-governmental committee, and of a legal framework, which will need negotiations and signing of legal documents on economic, agricultural, cultural and education cooperation.
Deputy PM Binh Minh conveyed an invitation to visit Vietnam from Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to the Romanian Government leader, who accepted the invitation with pleasure.