|The Vietnamese NA delegation at the event
Addressing the first plenary session of the ongoing 28th meeting of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF 28) in Canberra, Australia, Phong said multilateral parliamentary diplomacy creates dialogue opportunities, helps build trust and prevents conflicts on the basis of respect for international law and the United Nations Charter.
She proposed fostering parliamentary partnership in 2020 by consolidating mutual trust, understanding and respect, and broadening the partnership between the APPF and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum, the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA), the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and international organisations.
The efforts are design to create more resources and augment cooperation in dealing with conflicts and disputes in the spirit of dialogue, openness, construction and mutual support, in line with international law, the legislator said, emphasizing the need for parties to exercise self-restraint and avoid actions that violate international law and may escalate tensions and complicate the situation.
Vietnam affirms its foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, multilateralization and diversification of relations, being an active and responsible member of the international community. The country upholds the importance of multilateral forums which provide equal opportunities for all countries, thus contributing to ensuring peace, stability, cooperation and development, the NA Vice Chairwoman said.
She also called on APPF member parliaments to join hands with governments, take heed to sustainable development and make sustainable and inclusive development the regular and long-term orientation for the sake of all sides.
2020 is a crucial year for Vietnam when it assumes many major responsibilities, including the roles of the roles of the ASEAN Chair 2020, a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for the 2020 – 2021 tenure, and the host of ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA),
To fulfill those responsibilities, Vietnam pledges its best efforts to work closely with other countries to maintain the trust and confidence the international community has given to the nation, the legislator said.
The Vietnamese legislature suggested organising inter-parliamentary cooperation activities for sustainable development in 2020 when Vietnam serves as Chair of the AIPA.
In the framework of the APPF 28, the Vietnamese NA delegation has actively take part in meetings on politics-security, economy-trade, and the meeting of female parliamentarians.
On the sidelines of the APPF 28, Phong also met with Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives Tony Smith.
She used the occasion to express sympathy to Australia over human and property losses caused by wildfires in the country.
Phong reiterated Vietnam’s unwavering policy of placing importance to the strategic partnership with Australia and thanked Australia for providing continued official development assistance (ODA) to Vietnam and offering optimal conditions for Vietnamese expatriates in the country to boost their deeper integration into host society.
She also thanked Australia for backing Vietnam’s candidacy for a non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council in the 2020-2021 tenure while hoping that the two nations will continue their collaboration and mutual support in regional and international matters, for peace, stability and development in the region and the world as a whole.
With regard to the bilateral legislative ties, she asked both sides to improve the operational efficiency of the two friendship parliamentarians’ groups, as well as the sharing of working experience between their parliamentarians.
Phong conveyed Vietnamese NA Chairman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan’s invitation to the Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives to attend the 41st General Assembly of the AIPA in the capacity as an observer parliament. The event is set to be hosted by Vietnam in late August 2020.
Smith, for his side, applauded the growing ties between Vietnam and Australia over the past decades, and affirmed that Vietnam holds an important position in the hearts of Australians.
He also laid stress on the importance of bilateral cooperation in economics, trade, national defence and security to the bilateral ties, which was touched upon by Prime Minister Scott Morrison during his official visit to Vietnam last August.
He agreed with the Vietnamese legislator upon the need to further foster ties between the two legislatures and friendship parliamentarians’ groups and also voiced support and unanimous views with Vietnam on a number of issues of shared concern.