Italian President Sergio Mattarella (left) and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung (Source: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) - Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has expressed his delight at the signing of several cooperation documents between Vietnam and Italy during the State visit to Vietnam by Italian President Sergio Mattarella.

Meeting Italian President Sergio Mattarella in Hanoi on November 6, the PM welcomed the first visit to Vietnam by an Italian President and stated that Vietnam highly values Italy’s role in the region and the world.

He expressed wish to strengthen bilateral links across economics, trade, investment, science-technology, education-training, culture, tourism, national defence-security towards a two-way trade of 5 billion USD by 2016 as set by the PMs of the two countries.

Welcoming Mattarella’s presence at the Vietnam – Italy business forum and a food fair to be held in Ho Chi Minh City, the host said Vietnam hopes for Italian investment in oil and gas, energy, infrastructure, garment, footwear, wood processing and food industry.

On the occasion, he also urged the President and Prime Minister of Italy to push for the Italian parliament’s approval of the EU-Vietnam Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation (PCA), and support the early signing of the Vietnam – European Union free trade agreement and recognition of Vietnam as a market economy.

Mattarella emphasised that Italy considers Vietnam a partner of top significance in the region.

He expressed his confidence in the prospects of bilateral economic, trade and investment ties, given the great potential of both countries.

He also confirmed Italian parliament’s support to the PCA adoption and prompt recognition of Vietnam as a market economy.

The Italian President hailed Vietnam’s stall at the EXPO 2015 in Milan, saying that it was among the most beautiful and most visited stalls at the event.

On the East Sea issue, Mattarella said Italy pays attention to the stability, security, safety, maritime and aviation freedom in the East Sea as well as in all parts of the world.

The guest shared the view that any dispute in the East Sea must be settled by peaceful means in line with international law, adding that the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea are the foundation to address the issue.

The President hoped that parties concerned would not take unilateral action to exacerbate tension and instability in the East Sea. He also spoke highly of Vietnam’s stance and action to maintain peace and stability in the region.-VNA