Vietnam visit by Malaysian PM promises practical outcomes: diplomat

Update: 18:28 | 27/08/2019
The official visit to Vietnam by Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on August 27-28 is expected to generate practical outcomes, solidify trust between the countries’ leaders and strengthen the two peoples’ friendship.
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Vietnamese Ambassador to Malaysia Le Quy Quynh.

Vietnamese Ambassador to Malaysia Le Quy Quynh voiced the expectations ahead of the trip.

Comprehensive relations

Ambassador Quynh said since diplomatic ties were set up in 1973, Vietnam-Malaysia relations have recorded great strides, from politics, defence, security, economy to culture, tourism and people-to-people exchange. With bilateral ties lifted to a strategic partnership in 2015, their cooperation has been developing in all aspects.

In terms of politics-diplomacy, trust has been enhanced, especially via frequent visits and meetings. Last year, the two sides coordinated to organise many events marking the 45th founding anniversary of their diplomatic relationship (March 30).

Trade links between the two dynamic Southeast Asian economies have been growing fast, reaching 11.5 billion USD in 2018 (13.2 billion USD in Malaysian statistics), turning Malaysia into the sixth biggest trade partner of Vietnam, making the target of 15 billion USD or more by 2020 feasible, the diplomat noted.

Malaysia ranks eighth among foreign investors in Vietnam with nearly 600 projects worth some 13 billion USD.

Meanwhile, defence-security cooperation is an important pillar of the countries’ partnership, Quynh said, adding that delegation exchanges, training and experience sharing between their military services have taken place regularly. They have also shared information on terrorism, cybercrime and transnational crimes.

The ambassador described education-training, cultural exchange and people-to-people exchange as highlights of bilateral connections. With an advanced educational environment, Malaysia is a favourite destination in Southeast Asia for Vietnamese students, who have numbered more than 1,000 there. Many staff members in Vietnam’s state agencies have received training in different fields under the Malaysian Technical Cooperation Programme.

The more than 60,000 Vietnamese people in Malaysia have also received favourable conditions provided by the Malaysian Government, he said.

Quynh also pointed out the two sides’ effective cooperation at international and regional forums like the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) and the United Nations.

Malaysia supported Vietnam in its successful run for a non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council for 2020-2021 and the APEC Chairmanship in 2017.

Regarding the East Sea, they have worked together and joined other ASEAN members to maintain the bloc’s solidarity and common voice; ensure peace, security and stability in the East Sea; and promote the implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea, along with the building of an effective Code of Conduct in the waters.

Those achievements are the results of the mutual trust and understanding, the promotion of common interests, cooperation effectiveness enhancement and efforts towards the future by both countries’ leaders and peoples, according to Quynh.

Promising visit

The diplomat said in previous terms, PM Mohamad visited Vietnam four times, and the coming trip is his first official tour of the country since he was re-elected to the post.

The visit is made amidst a thriving bilateral partnership. However, there remains much room for the countries to expand their cooperation, he noted.

Quynh said Vietnam always treasures and wishes to bolster ties with Malaysia. Their relations have a solid foundation based on cultural and historical similarities, complementary economic structures and, especially, the friendship and efforts towards the future by the two governments and two peoples.

The visit by PM Mohamad will be a chance for the two sides to look back on what they have attained over the last 46 years, discuss measures to realise high-level agreements and create a favourable framework for their relations to grow, not only in bilateral aspects but also at regional and international forums of which both are members.

Ambassador Quynh believed that with existing advantages and thorough preparations, the trip will be successful, creating momentum for bilateral ties. Additionally, the Vietnam-Malaysia partnership will continue to be reinforced for the sake of the two peoples and for peace and prosperity in the region and the world.

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(Source: VNA)