Vietnam, Thailand hold 7th political consultation in Hanoi
Vietnam and Thailand held the seventh political consultation under the chair of Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Nguyen Quoc Dung and Permanent Secretary of the Thai Foreign Ministry Busaya Mathelin in Hanoi on January 20.
The seventh political consultation between Vietnam and Thailand takes place in Hanoi on January 20
The two sides shared the view that thefriendship and enhanced strategic partnership between Vietnam and Thailand haveattained strong and substantive strides.
In 2019, their high-level leaders continued to exchangevisits, including an official trip to Thailand and the attendance in the 40thGeneral Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) there byNational Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan in August. They also frequentlymet each other at multilateral forums, especially on the sidelines of the ASEANsummits hosted by Thailand.
Cooperation mechanisms have continued provingeffective, the officials said, noting that the countries successfully organisedthe third meeting of the joint committee on bilateral cooperation in January,the 11th meeting of the joint working group on political-security cooperationin August, and the third defence policy dialogue at the deputy ministeriallevel in September.
They described economic, trade and investmentties as an impressive highlight in bilateral relations. Thailand is currentlythe largest trade partner of Vietnam in ASEAN with bilateral trade reaching 17billion USD in 2019. It is the ninth biggest investor in Vietnam with 558projects worth nearly 11 billion USD.
Meanwhile, partnerships in other spheres likeconnectivity, tourism, science – technology, labour, culture and education havecreated encouraging outcomes. Notably, tourists between the two nationsapproximated 1.5 million last year, rising about 8 percent from 2018. Illegalfishing activities in each other’s waters were reduced considerably. Both sidesare also promoting the renewal of a labourer recruitment agreement so that itcan be implemented in 2020.
At the consultation, Vietnam and Thailand agreedto increase the exchange of all-level delegations; work together to prepare forthe fourth joint cabinet meeting co-chaired by their prime ministers in 2020;keep stepping up cooperation in security, defence, economy, trade, investment,connectivity, transport, tourism and labour; and bolster links between the twoforeign ministries on the basis of their 2015 cooperation deal.
Permanent Secretary Busaya Mathelin shared theview that the Asia-Pacific region, including Southeast Asia, is developingdynamically but also facing numerous challenges, requiring joint efforts todeal with.
She spoke highly of the success of the recentASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Retreat hosted by Vietnam in Nha Trang city.
For his part, Deputy Minister Dung stressed inthe current context, ASEAN needs to enhance solidarity, promote the realisationof the ASEAN Community, and assert its stature and central role in the regionalarchitecture.
Besides, as members of the Mekong sub-regionmechanisms, Vietnam and Thailand should increase coordination and sharing ofexperience with other member nations and relevant partners to substantivelyboost cooperation in the sub-region, he said.
He also congratulated Thailand on its successfulchairmanship of ASEAN in 2019 and talked about Vietnam’s priorities andinitiatives for the ASEAN chairmanship this year and non-permanent membershipof the UN Security Council for 2020-2021.
Dung also called on Thailand to support Vietnamto fulfill the roles and work closely in the common security issues of theregion, including the East Sea issue and the use and management of the MekongRiver’s water resources.
The eighth political consultation at the deputyforeign ministerial is set to take place in Thailand in 2021./.VNA