Vietnam regarded as one of Australia’s key partners in SEA

Update: 10:59 | 13/06/2019
Australia considers Vietnam one of its key partners in Southeast Asia and is keen to further strengthen bilateral ties, both within bilateral and multilateral frameworks, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne has said.
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Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and Australian FM Marise Payne.

Talks were held between Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne in Hanoi on June 12, during which the former hailed the Vietnam visit by the latter following her reappointment as Minister for Foreign Affairs cum Minister for Women of Australia, saying that it demonstrates the Australian government’s appreciation for Vietnam and substantial ties between the two countries. 

Minh thanked Australia for maintaining its development assistance to Vietnam which has been used effectively, thereby contributing to Vietnam’s socio-economic development. 

The two diplomats concurred to facilitate high-level visit exchanges in the near future, effectively promote 19 bilateral cooperation mechanisms, especially annual meetings between the two defence and foreign ministers, and soon hold the first ministerial-level Economic Partnership Meeting this year. 

They pledged to step up coordination in maritime security, fight against trans-national and drug crimes, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing. 

Host and guest also highlighted the importance of trade liberalisation and the role of multilateral trade system, especially amid rising protectionism and trade conflict. They vowed to tap into each side’s potential and strengths to further enhance bilateral economic links along with effectively tapping multilateral trade agreements to which the two nations are members, including the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). 

Both sides pledged to step up links in other important fields such as education-training, labour, innovation, smart agriculture, and people-to-people exchange. 

Regarding regional and global issues of shared concern, Payne congratulated Vietnam on winning a non-permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for the 2020-2021 tenure with high approval votes. 

Australia is appreciative of Vietnam’s role in the region and ASEAN, strongly supports the bloc’s central role in evolving regional architecture, she said, showing her confidence that Vietnam will successfully fulfill its tasks in the UNSC as well as in its position as ASEAN Chair 2020. 

The two ministers the significance of ensuring peace, stability, security, maritime and aviation safety and freedom in the East Sea as well as the settlement of disputes in line with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, full implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea and early formulation of a practical, effective and comprehensive Code of Conduct in the East Sea. 

On the occasion, they signed a Memorandum of Understanding between the two foreign ministries on improving women empowerment in external affairs amid global integration and digital era. 

They also witnessed the presentation of the Vietnamese State’s Friendship Order to the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research in recognition of its positive contributions to Vietnam’s agriculture and rural development.

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