|Deputy Prime Minister cum Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh talks over the phone with Norwegian Foreign Minister
The two diplomats compared notes on a score of measures to step up bilateral ties and coordination at multilateral forums, and noted with satisfaction the implementation of agreements reached during the visit to Norway by Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in May 2019. They consented to work together to launch an array of activities marking the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties (1971-2021).
Both sides discussed orientations to enhance bilateral economic and trade ties by accelerating the early signing of a free trade agreement (FTA) between Vietnam and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), in order to support their economies in overcoming the impacts of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
They also touched upon measures to contain the pandemic and boost post-pandemic economic development. The Norwegian Foreign Minister was appreciative of Vietnam’s pandemic control measures, which has proved effective and provided good experience.
Deputy PM Minh affirmed Vietnam’s willingness to share experience in this regard with Norway and offer mutual support in citizen protection work. He hailed Norway’s initiatives on UN coordination to help developing countries overcome the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and push ahead with the research for a vaccine for the disease.
Both sides showed their satisfaction at bilateral coordination at multilateral forums, noting that the two sides share similar viewpoints on international affairs, including the maintenance of peace and stability, respect for law, and sustainable development.
They concurred to go ahead with closer coordination to better tap the potential for cooperation between Norway and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) during the year Vietnam serves as stint as the chair of the association.
They also pledged to bolster collaboration at the UN, especially when Vietnam is taking on its role as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the 2020-2021 tenure.