Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Quoc Dung and Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore Chee Wee Kiong virtually co-chaired the 14th political consultation between the two countries on November 9.
The two sides reviewed the progress of bilateral cooperation across multiple fields and discussed what they will focus on to develop Vietnam-Singapore strategic partnership in a more effective fashion, especially following COVID-19 pandemic.
They agreed that the Vietnam - Singapore strategic partnership is at its best time, with growing political trust, and cooperation across the board continuing to achieve concrete results.
Despite the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic from early 2020 to September 2021, Singapore became the biggest foreign investor in Vietnam with 402 new projects worth US$11.4 billion. Vietnam - Singapore industrial parks (VSIPs) have made important contributions to Vietnam's socio-economic recovery and development.
Deputy FM Dung underscored the significance of enhancing connectivity between the two economies, bolstering cooperation to ensure supply chain, and expanding connections to new fields such as digital transformation, smart development, e-commerce, and developing Vietnam-Singapore Industrial Parks (VSIPs) into hi-tech, creative and environmentally friendly ones.
In response, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Singapore Chee Wee Kiong agreed with Vietnam's assessments and proposals on augumenting cooperation and providing more support for Vietnam in new fields of the digital technology era, renewable energy development, sustainable development, cyber security and training of high quality human resources.
He also affirmed Singapore’s readiness to assist Vietnam in vaccines via COVAX Facility, and suggested both sides soon finalize negotiations on mutual recognition of vaccine passports, put into operation priority travelling mechanisms, resume flights and facilitate travelling between the two nations.
The two sides pledged to continue working closely and offering mutual support at regional and international organizations and forums such as the United Nations, ASEAN, APEC, while effectively taking advantage of the benefits of new-generation free trade agreements (FTAs) such as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
Regarding regional and global issues of shared concern, they highlighted the importance of maintaining peace, stability, security, maritime and aviation safety and freedom in the East Sea, as well as peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
They also expressed support for serious and full implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and negotiations between ASEAN and China to reach a practical, effective and efficient Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) in line with international law.
Concluding the event, both sides held a ceremony to symbolically present anti-COVID-19 medical supplies to Vietnam, during which Deputy FM Nguyen Quoc Dung extended his sincere thanks to Singapore for its support for Vietnam's COVID-19 fight.
The pair consented to strengthen information sharing and coordination in research and production of COVID-19 vaccines and drugs.