VIETNAM POLITICAL NEWS HEADLINES NOVEMBER 1
Vietnam’s diplomatic policy introduced in Cambodia
Vietnamese Ambassador to Cambodia Vu Quang Minh presents Vietnam’s diplomatic policy at the Royal University of Phnom Penh on October 30
Vietnamese Ambassador to Cambodia Vu Quang Minh delivered a presentation on Vietnam’s diplomatic policy at the Royal University of Phnom Penh on October 30, highlighting the development of the partnership between the two nations.
Speaking before the university’s lecturers and over 100 students, Ambassador Minh underlined the importance of the Vietnam-Cambodia traditional friendship, and efforts made by leaders and people of both nation to nurture and promote the relations on the basis of political trust, fair and win-win cooperation, as well as mutual respect and mutual support under the motto of “good neighbourliness, traditional friendship, comprehensive cooperation and long-term sustainability”.
Vietnam pursues a foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, openness, diversification and multilateralisation of international relations and proactive international integration, and being a friend, trusted partner and responsible member of the international community for peace, independence and development, the Vietnamese diplomat stated.
On the basis of this diplomatic policy, Vietnam promotes the expansion of multifaceted, bilateral and multilateral cooperation with other countries and territories, with priority given to developing relations with neighbouring and regional countries, and with power countries and major political and economic centres, international and regional organizations, in line with basic principles of international law and the UN Charter, Minh said.
He noted that over the past years, Vietnam actively negotiated and signed frameworks of friendship and comprehensive cooperation with many countries in and outside the region for the 21st century.
During the presentation, Ambassador Minh also answered questions from RUPP’s students./.
Vietnam backs international legal processes: ambassador
Ambassador Dang Dinh Quy, head of the Vietnamese Permanent Mission to the UN
Vietnam supports international legal processes, including the International Court of Justice (ICJ), said Ambassador Dang Dinh Quy, head of the Vietnamese Permanent Mission to the UN.
Speaking at the plenary meeting on the report of the ICJ in the framework of the UN General Assembly’s 74th Session in New York on October 30, Quy affirmed that the court plays an important role in maintaining global peace and security through the mechanism of adjudicating lawsuits among countries and the consulting mechanism requested by the UN General Assembly, the UN Security Council and a number of agencies in line with the UN Charter.
He stressed that the principle of peaceful settlement of international disputes is one of the basic principles of international law, affirming that countries can choose a variety of methods to resolve disputes in accordance with the UN Charter, including the jurisdiction mechanism.
According to the ambassador, many countries tend to file lawsuits related to land and sea territorial disputes for settlement at the ICJ.
At the meeting, ICJ President Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf said this year, the court brought in three verdicts, offered one advisory opinion and 16 orders, and organised trials for six lawsuits.
The ICJ is currently handling 16 lawsuits related to many areas of international law such as maritime law, maritime delimitation, diplomatic relations, consular affairs, and interpretation of international treaties, he said.
He added that the ICJ continues to be the only global adjudicating mechanism, and parties using ICJ's dispute settlement mechanism are many countries worldwide./.
Vietnam attends 36th Ministerial Conference of the Francophonie
|Vietnamese Ambassador to France Nguyen Thiep at the event (Photo: baochinhphu)|
A Vietnamese delegation led by Ambassador to France Nguyen Thiep attended the 36th Ministerial Conference of the Francophonie (CMF) in Monaco from October 30 – 31.
The event, themed "Reconciling humanity and the planet: perspectives in the Francophone space on the eve of 50 years of the International Organisation of Francophonie (OIF)", drew over 80 delegations from countries and territories that are members and observers of the OIF.
Speaking at the event, Thiep affirmed Vietnam’s support for the OIF’s efforts, especially in promoting economic cooperation, strengthening connectivity among regions, particularly Africa and ASEAN, and partnership in innovation, sustainable development and governance reform.
Highlighting peace and stability as prerequisites for sustainable development, he expressed Vietnam’s concern over recent developments in the East Sea caused by the restoration and upgrade of rock islands, militarisation, violations of sovereignty and sovereign right in Vietnam’s waters as defined in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
Thiep called on concerned parties in the East Sea to exercise restraint, settle disputes via peaceful means in line with international law, especially the 1982 UNCLOS, fully implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), and speed up negotiations to soon reach a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).
The diplomat also urged the Francophone community to continue raising objective voices and supporting efforts of the concerned parties to turn the East Sea into a region of peace, stability and cooperation.
As a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the 2020 – 2021 tenure, Vietnam will strive to ensure peace and security in the Francophone space, particularly in Francophone member countries in Africa, he said.
Participants expressed their interest in approaches to dealing with crisis and terrorism, coping with climate change, fulfilling sustainable development goals, ensuring gender equality and collaboration in digital, cultural and language fields.
The conference adopted four resolutions on oceanography, the role of innovation in science, education and digital economy; the 30th anniversary of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the 50th founding anniversary of OIF.
Founded in 1970, OIF now groups 88 member states and territories. Vietnam is an active and important member of the organisation in Asia-Pacific./.
State budget becomes more sustainable: Finance Minister
Finance Minister Dinh Tien Dung speaks at the National Assembly's plenum on October 31
Finance Minister Dinh Tien Dung presented a report on the State budget performance in 2019, estimates for 2020 and the five-year financial plan (2016-2020) to the National Assembly on October 31.
According to the report, the spending structure of the State budget is shifting positively with most essential five-year targets surpassed.
Overspending has been kept under control, averaging 3.6-3.7 percent of the GDP during the period from 2016 to 2019, while the target is 3.9 percent. The rate is envisioned to be at 3.44 percent of the GDP in 2020, the report said.
The Finance Minister also talked about difficulties of the State budget, one of which is the declining revenue from tax and fees, mainly caused by dropping contribution from crude oil and import-export.
Therefore, it is necessary to revise the revenue policy in order to collect an additional 300 trillion VND to compensate for the reduction in revenue from crude oil and import-export activities.
In addition, several industries and sectors would not achieve the high growth as expected, affecting contributions to the State budget.
Minister Dung said the ministry is researching on measures to ensure both the competitiveness of the investment environment and budget revenues in accordance with international practice. The ministry will also take measures to fight tax evasion and transfer pricing, and address tax arrears, so as to fulfill the five-year targets at the highest level possible.
In reply to some NA deputies’ concern about unsustainable budget revenue, the minister said the State budget is becoming more and more sustainable, with revenues from the three economic sectors (state, non-state and foreign-invested sectors) are projected to make up nearly 45 percent of total State budget revenue, while the rate was only 39 percent in 2017./.
PM receives European Parliament’s international trade chief
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (R) and Chairman of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade Bernd Lange
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc hosted a reception in Hanoi on October 31 for Chairman of the European Parliament (EP)’s Committee on International Trade Bernd Lange.
The PM thanked Lange for his efforts to push for the European Union’s signing of Vietnam – EU Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the Vietnam – EU Investment Protection Agreement (IPA).
As both sides will celebrate the 30th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties next year, Vietnam and the EU need to increase the exchange of high-level visits, maintain dialogue and cooperation mechanisms, as well as promptly solve existing problems in bilateral ties, PM Phuc said.
The Vietnamese PM hailed the strategic economic significance of the EVFTA and IPA to Vietnam – EU ties as well as the promotion of open, transparent and rules-based economic connectivity.
He believed that the Vietnamese NA and the EP will approve the agreements at the earliest time possible.
The leader welcomed the EU’s interest in Asia-Pacific and its stance on supporting freedom, security and maritime safety in the East Sea, wishing that the EU would continue playing an active and constructive role in the region.
He also hoped that the EU – ASEAN ties, and Vietnam – EU ties within multilateral framework will continue to be strengthened, contributing to peace and prosperity in the region and the world.
Lange affirmed that the EU supports Vietnam’s stance on the East Sea issue, adding that with the signing of important agreements on trade and investment, the development of ties based on partnership instead of competition is extremely important in the context of a constantly changing world with numerous risks.
He said the EP will consider voting to ratify the two agreements in next February, and informed that in this visit, his delegation had met Vietnamese authorities to discuss the ratification and delivery of commitments in those deals.
The guest affirmed that the EU is ready to help Vietnam build and perfect policies in order to propel growth and improve people’s living conditions.
The EU wants to work closely with Vietnam at multilateral forums, especially in 2020 when Vietnam serves as ASEAN Chair and a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council for the 2020 – 2021 tenure, he said. /.
Deputy PM promises optimal conditions for UAE enterprises
Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung (R) receives CEO of Mubadala Petroleum Bakheet Al Katheeri in Hanoi on October 31
Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung pledged favourable conditions for UAE firms to expand investment in the country while receiving CEO of Mubadala Petroleum Bakheet Al Katheeri in Hanoi on October 31.
The Deputy PM said relations between Vietnam and the UAE are growing well as the two countries have become important partners of each other based on cooperation pillars in economy, trade and investment.
The UAE is currently a major trade partner and has invested in many projects in Vietnam, he said.
There are also a large number of Vietnamese people in the UAE, and they have been contributing greatly to the host nation’s socio-economic development, Dung added.
At the meeting, Bakheet highlighted Mubadala Petroleum’s wish to continue working closely with Vietnamese and international partners to expand investment in oil and gas exploitation in the Southeast Asian country.
He added Mubadala Petroleum also hopes to invest in other fields like renewable energy and pharmaceutical industries.
Applauding Mubadala Petroleum’s achievements and investment ideas in Vietnam, Dung asked the group to increase its investment in more oil and gas wells and engage in other areas like renewable energy through new investment forms or partnerships with Vietnamese and foreign businesses.
The Vietnamese Government will provide the best possible conditions for Mubadala Petroleum, as well as other UAE enterprises, to invest and do business in Vietnam, thus bringing success to all parties, he affirmed./.
PM receives new German Ambassador to Vietnam
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (R) and German Ambassador to Vietnam Guido Hildner
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc affirmed that Vietnam attaches importance to strengthening the strategic partnership with Germany during a reception in Hanoi on October 31 for newly-appointed German Ambassador to Vietnam Guido Hildner.
The PM believed that with his wealth of experience, the ambassador will make practical contributions to bilateral strategic partnership in the near future.
The Vietnamese government, ministries, agencies and localities are ready to create favourable conditions for the ambassador to fulfill assigned tasks, he said.
Hildner, for his part, lauded Vietnam as an important strategic partner of Germany and informed his host that four German delegations will visit Vietnam this week to carry forward coordination in economy, science and environment.
He suggested the two countries should further enhance ties in climate, environment, energy and vocational training.
The ambassador stressed that the recent signing of the EVFTA is a boon for Vietnam – Europe ties as well as Vietnam – Germany ties in particular.
The diplomat expressed Germany’s stance on supporting peace, stability, freedom, maritime and aviation security and safety in the East Sea in line with international law.
In his view, the two countries will have more cooperation opportunities when they both serve as non-permanent members of the United Nations Security Council for the 2020 – 2021 tenure, Vietnam becomes ASEAN Chair in 2020 and Germany takes up the rotating EU Chair in the second half of 2020.
PM Phuc proposed the two countries soon build a strategic action plan for the 2019 – 2021 term and work together in holding celebrations for the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties next year, as well as facilitating the exchange of high-level visits.
The host asked Germany to push for the European Parliament’s ratification of EVFTA and the EU – Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement to benefit all sides.
He also called on German government and the EU to continue raising strong voice to support the settlement of disputes in the East Sea by peaceful means in line with international law, particularly the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.
According to him, Germany has been the top trade partner of Vietnam for many years with a two-way trade of 10.8 billion USD last year. However, German investment in Vietnam still stays modest at roughly 2 billion USD, ranking fourth among European member states.
PM Phuc expressed hope that the ambassador will work with agencies concerned to promote investment ties./.
Vietnam links trade development with social security: minister
The meeting between Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Dao Ngoc Dung and the delegation of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade in Hanoi on October 31
Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Dao Ngoc Dung affirmed Vietnam’s efforts to link trade development with ensuring social security while meeting a delegation of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade in Hanoi on October 31.
At the event, the two sides discussed issues relevant to the ratification of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), especially labour-related ones.
Over the past few days, the Vietnamese National Assembly has spent time on scrutinising the draft revised Labour Code, and the country has also consulted the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and relevant international organisations in the country about this matter, the minister noted.
He cited the international bodies as saying that the draft revised Labour Code has made a great stride in making law on labour. The code will affect around 54 million people in Vietnam, and it has highlighted the right to self-determination and self-negotiation of employees and employers.
The Vietnamese parliament has ratified the ILO’s Convention No. 98 concerning the application of the principles of the right to organise and to bargain collectively. Besides, the spirit of the ILO conventions No. 108 and 87 has also been reflected in the draft revised Labour Code, according to Dung.
Mentioning the EVFTA that is awaiting ratification, the official added Vietnam has been making efforts to associate trade development with social security ensuring for the sake of sustainable human development.
At the meeting, Chairman of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade Bernd Lange said his delegation’s working trip to Vietnam this time aims to strengthen Vietnam-EU cooperation. It is also meant to prepare for the European Parliament and its member parliaments’ consideration of ratifying the EVFTA and the Investment Protection Agreement between the two sides./.
EP officials hail Vietnam’s readiness for EVFTA, IPA
Chairman of the European Parliament (EP)'s Committee on International Trade (INTA) Bernd Lange (sixth from left) has a meeting with NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan during his trip to Vietnam.
Chairman of the European Parliament (EP)'s Committee on International Trade (INTA) Bernd Lange (sixth from left) has a meeting with NA Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan during his trip to Vietnam.
Chairman of the European Parliament (EP)’s Committee on International Trade (INTA) Bernd Lange and INTA Vice Chairman Jan Zahradil highly evaluated Vietnam’s readiness and meticulous preparations for the approval of the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) and the EU-Vietnam Investment Protection Agreement (IPA) during a working trip to Vietnam from October 28-31.
Lange told the press on October 31 that during his stay, he had the chance to discuss the agreements with high-ranking leaders, ministries, sectors and the business community so that he and the INTA could carry out a thorough evaluation of Vietnam’s ability to implement the pacts in the future.
He particularly laid stress on the meeting with Chairwoman of the National Assembly (NA) Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan, during which both sides talked about Vietnam’s progress to realise the two deals in tandem with the consideration and approval of three conventions of the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
The Vietnamese parliament has already adopted ILO Convention No. 98 concerning the application of principles of the right to organise and to bargain collectively, he said, adding that Convention No. 105 on the abolition of forced labour and Convention No. 87 on freedom of association were due for consideration.
He described Vietnam’s revised Labour Code 2019, which is expected to be passed at the 14th NA’s ongoing 8th session, as an important step to protecting social rights, safety and security.
Responding to reporters’ queries, the INTA Chairman said the EP sees the implementation of ILO conventions and cyber security law as important factors as they play an important role in assuring the rights and benefits of people, workers and businesses.
Voting to pass the deals will first be held at the European Commission (EC) on January 21, 2020 before a second vote at the EP’s plenary session in February 2020 for official ratification of the pacts, he added.
Meanwhile, Zahradil said the signing of the two deals indicated the sound ties between the EU and Vietnam.
Suggesting Vietnam and the EU grasp every opportunity to facilitate the ratification of the EVFTA and IPA, Zahradil said he is looking forward to positive results in February next year./.
Hanoi keen to partner Sri Lanka in agriculture, cultural exchanges
Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chung (R) receives Sri Lankan Ambassador to Vietnam Sampath Prasanna Walpita Gamage. (Source: http://hanoimoi.com.vn)
Bilateral cooperation potential between Vietnam’s capital city of Hanoi and Sri Lanka remains large, especially in the fields of agriculture, tourism, and cultural exchanges, a local official has said.
Chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chung made the statement at a reception for Sri Lankan Ambassador to Vietnam Sampath Prasanna Walpita Gamage in Hanoi on October 31.
Hanoi is willing to introduce freshwater aquaculture businesses as well as connect with localities across Vietnam to transfer technology in this field to Sri Lanka, he said.
The two countries’ governments are negotiating a direct air route between Hanoi and Colombo to facilitate travel, family visits and education development, he added.
The ambassador agreed with the host’s cooperation proposals, and suggested the two countries promote youth exchanges.
He added that he will actively work to attract more tourists from Sri Lanka to Vietnam and Hanoi.
He also supported the establishment of the Hanoi-Colombo direct air route and hoped the two sides will implement the project soon.
Chairman Chung voiced his hope that the ambassador will serve as a bridge to forge the two countries’ friendship and boost locality-to-locality cooperation./.
Legislators discuss overall plan on development for ethnic regions
At the meeting
Lawmakers are discussing an overall plan on socio-economic development for mountainous, ethnic minority and extremely disadvantaged regions during a plenary sitting in Hanoi on November 1.
The sitting will be also live broadcast on VTV1, VOV1 and National Assembly TV channels.
The plan is expected to improve personnel quality, build a strong political system at the grassroots levels, maintain political security and social safety and order in border areas, strengthen the great national unity bloc, and enhance ethnic minority groups’ trust in the Party and State.
If approved, the scheme will be carried out from 2021 to 2030, with the aim of doubling ethnic minority people’s income compared to 2020, and reducing the rate of poor households by 3 – 5 percent per year.
As scheduled, the legislators will pass a resolution approving the scheme on November 18.
In the afternoon, the lawmakers will debate a draft resolution on the removal of fines for late tax payments and late tax payments for insolvent taxpayers, delay in the issuance of mineral and water resources exploitation rights, among others./.
NA hail socio-economic, budget performance in 2019
The National Assembly acknowledged and highly appreciated the outcomes achieved in implementing the NA’s resolutions on socio-economic development and State budget in 2019 during a live-broadcast discussion on October 31, the 9th working day of the legislature’s 8th session.
The NA began the important discussion on socio-economic and State budget performance in 2019 and plans for 2020 on October 30. The discussion is being broadcast live on national television and radio and the NA’s TV channel.
Most opinions approved the Government’s reports on the matters and the NA Standing Committee’s verification reports, saying that the reports have created a comprehensive picture of the country’s socio-economic situation in 2019 and proposed solutions and tasks on socio-economic development in 2020.
The deputies, however, contributed their ideas with a view to further perfecting the reports, calling for more assessment of growth sustainability and quality and pointing out many outstanding problems in socio-economic infrastructure, education-training quality management, poverty reduction and new-style rural area building, development gap among regions, environmental pollution, along with the complicated developments in the East Sea, among others.
They also suggested solutions to promoting rapid, stable and sustainable socio-economic development in the time ahead.
During the discussion, Minister of Science and Technology Chu Ngoc Anh, Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Ngoc Thien, Minister of Finance Dinh Tien Dung and Minister of Planning and Investment Nguyen Chi Dung took the floor to explain further issues of NA deputies’ concern.
On November 1, the NA is slated to consider the master plan on socio-economic development in ethnic minority, mountainous and especially disadvantaged regions in the morning. The sitting will be broadcast live on national TV and radio.
In the afternoon, the NA will look into a draft resolution on handling tax debts and fines on overdue debts of tax payers who have no longer been able to pay to the State budget, the deferment of payment of mining and water resource exploitation fees, and the use of 20 percent of the balance of the medical insurance fund in 2015./.
ASEAN Economic Community Council holds 18th meeting in Thailand
The 18th ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Council Meeting takes place in the Thai province of Nonthaburi on October 31
The 18th ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Council Meeting took place in the Thai province of Nonthaburi on October 31 to prepare for the 35th ASEAN Summit slated for the next few days.
The Vietnamese delegation, including representatives from the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Planning and Investment, was led by Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Quoc Khanh.
Opening the event, Thai Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce Jurin Laksanavisit said the formation of the AEC plays an important role in the economy of the region and the world.
He noted ASEAN is attracting attention from investors around the globe, adding that foreign investment in ASEAN increased 5.3 percent in 2018, which was a positive sign for the region amidst growing tensions among big economies and the global economic recession.
At the meeting, the AEC Council reviewed the implementation of the AEC Blueprint 2025 and made 10 recommendations to push ahead with the work.
They also looked back on the realisation of initiatives launched by Thailand, which holds the ASEAN chairmanship in 2019. They noted that 10 out of the 13 priorities Thailand had set have been completed, and the three remaining will be completed by the end of this year.
Also on October 31, ASEAN economic ministers signed a protocol for an enhanced dispute settlement mechanism.
The AEC Council chairs the building and implementation of the AEC Blueprint 2025. The blueprint consists of five interrelated and mutually reinforcing characteristics, namely: a highly integrated and cohesive economy; a competitive, innovative, and dynamic ASEAN; enhanced connectivity and sectoral cooperation; a resilient, inclusive, people-oriented, and people-centred ASEAN; and a global ASEAN./.