Beijing (VNA) – The Vietnamese Embassy in Beijing hosted a ceremony celebrating the 66 th anniversary of Vietnam – China diplomatic ties (January 18) on January 12.

Speaking at the event, Vietnamese Ambassador Dang Minh Khoi reviewed that Vietnam – China ties had progressed positively last year, evidenced by a number of visits by senior leaders.

Vietnam attaches special importance to and wishes to foster the neighborliness and comprehensive cooperation with China, considering it a top priority in the country’s diplomatic policy, he said, adding that Vietnam is currently China’s second largest trade partner in the ASEAN while China is the largest trade partner of Vietnam for the 11 consecutive years.

He hoped that the bilateral ties will be taken to a new level this year.

On the East Sea dispute, both sides should settle the issue via friendly negotiations in line with international law and agreements reached by the two countries’ leaders, as well as seek basic and long-term measures that are mutually acceptable.

The two countries should control issues at sea, fully and effectively realise the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea, and promptly reach a Code of Conduct in the East Sea, refrain from acts that further complicate the situation, promptly settle emerging issues for the maintenance of peace and stability in the East Sea and the region, he stated.

Chinese Assistant Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou, for his part, wished to promote mutually-beneficial collaboration with Vietnam, and deal with differences for the benefit of the two peoples.

On the occasion, a photo and painting exhibition “Vietnam – endless beauty”, co-hosted by the Vietnamese Embassy in China and the Vietnamese Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, is underway in Beijing from January 11-17.-VNA