|NA Vice Chairman Phung Quoc Hien (left) and Deputy Speaker of the Hungarian NA Jakab Istvan (Photo: VNA)
During his talks with Deputy Speaker of the Hungarian NA Jakab Istvan, Hien said his ongoing visit to Hungary is expected to contribute to enhancing the bilateral relationship.
Vietnam always keeps in mind the valuable and practical support and assistance of the Hungarian State and people for Vietnam’s past struggle for national liberation and reunification as well as its present cause of national construction, the legislator said.
In 2020, Vietnam and Hungary will join hands in celebrating the 70th founding anniversary of diplomatic ties with various cultural exchanges, tourism, trade and investment promotion activities in order to bring people of the two countries closer, according to Hien.
The NA Vice Chairman rejoiced at the fruitful development of the bilateral relationship across spheres, as well as their mutual support at multilateral forums.
Hien used the occasion to thank Hungary for its support for Vietnam’s signing of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA), and suggested the country promote the early ratification of these deals, creating new momentum for economic, trade and investment links between Vietnam and the EU and Hungary in particular.
He also thanked Hungary for creating favourable conditions for the Vietnamese community in the country to stabilise their lives and integrate into the host society, considering them an important bridge helping to tighten the friendship.
The legislator lauded the dynamic development of bilateral economic, trade and investment cooperation, with two-way trade in 2018 doubling that of the previous year to 645.6 million USD.
The two sides should step up trade and investment promotion, support their businesses and cooperate in such areas as education, health care, pharmaceutical industry, water resources management, environmental protection, agricultural production, processing industry and manufacturing engineering, Hien suggested.
He appreciated Hungary for its provision of official development assistance (ODA) worth 440 million EUR to some projects in Vietnam as well as its 200 scholarships to Vietnamese students each year.
Health care and medical equipment are also areas having potential for cooperation, he said, adding that Vietnam welcomes Hungary to supply and open modern pharmaceutical plants in the country.
Regarding security, safety and freedom of navigation in the East Sea, the NA Vice Chairman informed his host about tensions in the waters over the past time, with violations of Vietnam’s maritime sovereignty.
Vietnam is persistently pursuing a policy of settling peacefully disputes in line with international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), towards building a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC), he said.
Vietnam applauded the attention and stance of Hungary and the EU on the East Sea issue and the regional security, and hopes for more support from Hungary for Vietnam’s just viewpoints and stance on this problem, he said.
Hien noted with pleasure the coordination and mutual support between the two NAs at regional and international inter-parliamentary forums and their exchange of delegations, especially high-level ones.
Lauding the effective and result-oriented cooperation between the two legislatures over the past time, the NA Vice Chairman expressed his hope that the legislative ties will further develop in the time ahead through the signing of a cooperation framework.
He called on the two NAs to increase exchanges between parliamentarians’ groups and young parliamentarians, coordinate in implementing collaboration agreements and joint strategic projects, support exchanges between the Governments, localities, enterprises and people of the two countries, and promote mutually beneficial cooperation.
For his part, Istvan said Hungary admires Vietnam for is socio-economic achievements, saying thanks to the reform process, Vietnam has made outstanding performance in growth and job creation.
The country has also rapidly grasp scientific and technological advances, he stressed.
Earlier, Hien paid a courtesy visit to Hungarian NA Speaker Kover Laszlo, during which he conveyed NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan’s invitation to the host leader to visit Vietnam on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the bilateral diplomatic ties.
He touched upon economic and education cooperation between Vietnam and Hungary, relations between the NAs and people of the two countries, along with issues regarding security, safety and freedom of navigation, and law observance, particularly the 1982 UNCLOS, in the East Sea.
Hungary considers Vietnam an important partner in Southeast Asia and wishes for comprehensive and close cooperation with the country in such areas as economy, national defence and justice, Laszlo said, suggesting Vietnam facilitate the construction of a Hungarian culture and community centre in Hanoi.
Hungary keeps a close watch and supports Vietnam’s viewpoints on the peaceful settlement of disputes in the East Sea, he said.
During his stay in Hungary, Hien had a working session with leaders of the Ministry of Innovation and Technology to discuss the management of high-speed railways in Vietnam.
He also met with Hungary’s Deputy Secretary for Transport Peter Toth, and representatives of the Hungary-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group, and attended a banquet hosted by Jakab Istvan.
The legislator and his entourage visited the Vietnamese community doing business at the Sarga Bufe trade centre and worked with the Vietnamese Embassy in Hungary.