Thursday, 15/11/2018
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc wrapped up his working visit to Europe
7/11/2018 9:8' Send Print
The Prime Minister and the Vietnamese delegation attend ASEM 12.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc made a “three-leg trip with six objectives,” including an intense working program, with 69 bilateral and multilateral activities, within two large international conferences, a working visit to with the European Commission (EC) and visits to three important European partners of Vietnam in Europe.

At the 12th ASEM in Brussels, the President of the European Council invited Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to delivered a keynote address at the plenary session on "Strengthening the Multilateral System: Promoting the ASEM Partnership to Address Challenges." The Prime Minister made a number of highly appreciated proposals, such as that ASEM should take the lead in promoting multilateral cooperation, maintain a rule-based international order and respond to global challenges, take lead in honoring commitments on climate change, natural disaster responses. The Prime Minister emphasized that ASEM should share its experiences to unlock potential of innovation, creativity, supporting vulnerable groups in accessing digital technology, adapting to changes and improving their responses to risks.

Affirming that Viet Nam always attaches great importance to ASEM cooperation, the Prime Minister proposed that Vietnam will host the conferences "ASEM on Inclusive Economic and Social Development in Asia and Europe" and "ASEM on Promoting the Digital Economy in the context of the Fourth Industrial Revolution in 2019.”

At a restricted session of ASEM national leaders on "International and Regional Issues," Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc stated that peace, cooperation and development are the mainstream of the time, however the international community is witnessing unprecedented shifts and challenges. The Prime Minister suggested that the immediate issue is to reduce commercial frictions in order to continue the recovery of and ensure the bright prospects of the global economy. Vietnam and the ASEAN countries have been working closely with the international community, including ASEM members, to maintain peace, stability, security, freedom of navigation and aviation without obstruction in the East Sea, where there are major international maritime routes linking Asia and Europe and the world.

On the sidelines of the summit, the Prime Minister had 12 bilateral meetings with heads of states and leaders attending the Meeting, including President of Mongolia, Prime Ministers of China, Norway, Slovenia and Spain, the Netherlands, Poland, Finland, Russia, Greece, the United Kingdom, among others, to exchange measures to promote bilateral cooperation and solve specific problems.

The leaders highly appreciated the socio-economic development achievements and the increasingly important and active role and position of Vietnam in the region and international arena. Many countries affirmed their support for Viet Nam to stand for a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for 2020-2021term, and pledged to continue working closely with Viet Nam at the United Nations and other international and regional organizations to maintain peace, security, cooperation and development in the region and the world, including the East Sea. EU member states supported the Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and maintained that the agreement should be signed and adopted early to realize the EU's strategy on EU-Asia connectivity.

At the first P4G Summit in Denmark, as representative of one of the founders, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc gave a strong message on the importance of strengthening international cooperation to implement Green Growth and the Global Goals. Vietnam will work closely with P4G in the coming time to successfully implement initiatives that promote sustainable development through realization of the Green Growth Strategy in Vietnam and the world. Concluding his speech, the Prime Minister emphasized that Vietnam is ready to push for the implementation of P4G initiatives on the promotion of public-private partnership (PPP) projects in green growth, especially in energy saving and renewable energy, agriculture, water resources, smart urban development, circular economy.

At the talks with the Prime Minister of Austria, the incumbent EU President, the two sides agreed to coordinate and strive to make Austria one of the leading European economic partners of Vietnam. Currently Vietnam is Austria's largest trading partner in Southeast Asia and Austria is one of the 10 biggest export markets of Vietnam in the EU. Turnover in 2017 reached US$4 billion and is growing rapidly.

At the talks with the Prime Minister of Belgium, the two sides agreed to strengthen economic cooperation and maintain cooperative mechanisms such as the Vietnam-Belgium Joint Commission on Economic Cooperation to orient economic relations. On this occasion, the two sides formally established a Strategic Partnership in the field of agriculture.

At the talks with Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, the two sides noted with satisfaction that since the upgrade of relation to Comprehensive Partnership in September 2013, two-way trade turnover has increased, reaching 664 million USD in 2017, four times higher than 2005 and two times higher than 2010. The two sides shared their views on bilateral relations and discussed specific measures to deepen the Comprehensive Partnership between Vietnam and Denmark.

Working with the President of the European Commission, the Prime Minister emphasized that the EU is the third largest trading partner, the largest non-refundable ODA donor, the leading FDI investor in Vietnam. The two sides have a lot of potential for cooperation, and the EU's advanced economy is complementary to Vietnam's fast-growing economy. The President of the EC attached great importance to comprehensive cooperation with Vietnam and informed that the European Commission, at its meeting at 12 hrs on October 17, agreed to submit to the European Council for approving the signing of the EVFTA (expected by the end of 2018) and submitted to the European Parliament for ratification (in early 2019).

At the business forums, seminars, bilateral meetings, leaders and businesses of countries expressed hope that the EVFTA will be signed and approved in the earliest time, saying that the EVFTA will open up great opportunities for economic, trade and investment cooperation between Vietnam and the EU.

The working visit to Europe of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and the high-level delegation of the Vietnamese Government was a success, conveying the message and image of a dynamic Vietnam with rapid economic development and social-political stability. The visit brought about important results, especially the European Commission's approval of the EVFTA, creating an optimistic atmosphere in the business community, continuing to enhance bilateral relations with Vietnam’s partners in Europe, expanding multilateral foreign relations, actively contributing to the formation and shaping of multilateral cooperation mechanisms, and increasing Vietnam’s effective participation in addressing global challenges.

Nguyen Duc