Vietnam, Australia enhance stronger strategic partnership

VOV.VN -Both nations have agreed to solidify cooperation in such key areas as security -defense, economy-trade, science -technology, education-training, and development aid, which will give extra leverage to the expansion of cooperation in other potential domains.

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President Tran Dai Quang and Governor-General of Australia Peter Cosgrove hold talks in Hanoi on May 24 during which, they concurred to consolidate political and strategic trust by intensifying exchange visits and meetings.

President Quang highlighted the significance of the Governor-General’s visit which, he believes will remarkably contributed to propelling the Vietnam-Australia strategic partnership forward in the time ahead.

The Australian leader congratulated Vietnam on its tremendous achievements in the nation building and development cause, as well as its increasing role and position in the region and the world.

He affirmed his nation’s recognition of great importance to the friendship with Vietnam and hopes to further deepen the newly-established strategic partnership. 

The leaders showed their elation at the strong and effective development of Vietnam-Australia relations in recent times, saying that the regular exchange of high-ranking delegations at all levels demonstrates the two sides’ respect for the reinforcement of their political trust and mutual understanding. 

They held that the two countries have yielded encouraging results in their economic ties.

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Last year's two-way trade value reached almost US$6.5 billion. Australia has injected US$1.8 billion in 400 projects in Vietnam, ranking 19th out of 129 countries and territories investing in the country.

They consented to continue launching a string of activities to celebrate the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties, thus raising public awareness of the bilateral relations. 

Both sides underlined the need to improve the efficiency of existing bilateral cooperation mechanisms, and promote newly-formed cooperation mechanisms such as Economic partnership, Innovation partnership, Agriculture partnership, and the meeting of Foreign Ministers. 

They urged the two sides to double efforts to push pillar cooperation fields such as security-defence; economy-trade; science-technology; education-training; and development aid, towards expanding their collaboration in other potential fields.

President Quang proposed the two sides seriously take into account trade barriers, which can affect their key exports; and work out policies aimed at encouraging Vietnamese and Australian businesses to increase investment in the fields of Australia’s strength and Vietnam’s demand, including energy, infrastructure, telecommunication, finance-banking, mining, manufacturing, hi-tech agriculture, education and tourism. 

The Governor-General affirmed his nation's readiness to enhance security-defence links with Vietnam with a focus on training, and joining the UN peacekeeping force while voicing support for Vietnam in dealing with post-war UXO consequences.

The country will also provide Vietnam with information related to missing Vietnamese officers in the spirit of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the two sides in 2015, he told his host.

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President Quang thanked the Australian side for priotizing Vietnam a in its official development assistance (ODA) provision,  assuring that Australia-funded development projects have been implemented effectively.
After the construction of My Thuan bridge, Cao Lanh bridge built with Australian funding in the Mekong Delta region is due to enter operation on May 27, marking itself as a vivid symbol of Vietnam-Australia friendship, he emphasized.

The two leaders also highlighted the potential for the two countries to expand their collaboration in education-training, culture exchange, tourism, labour and sports, which will help reinforce the friendship between the two sides. 

President Quang noted a sharp increase in the number of Vietnamese studying Australia with nearly 30,000 currently while around 1,000 Australians visited Vietnam under exchange programmes and the New Colombo Plan, he said.

Meanwhile, the Australian leader expressed his impression at the number of 400,000 Australians visiting Vietnam in 2017.

They agreed to facilitate the two countries’ airline firms opening more direct flights connecting their big cities, and incentivise their citizens to join the Vietnam-Australia Work and Holiday programme. 

During their talks, the leaders also compared notes on regional and international issues of shared concern.

They also assured mutual support at regional and international forums, especially the UN, ASEAN, and cooperation mechanisms led by ASEAN; consistent stance in East Sea-related issues; and closer cooperation in realizing the freshly-signed Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

On the occasion, the Australian leader invited President Quang to visit Australia at a convenient time.