The cooperation potential between Vietnam and Australia is extensive and remains largely untapped, as such both sides ought to go the extra mile to deepen their comprehensive partnership, Ambassador to Australia Luong Thanh Nghi told the Vietnam News Agency.

He commended the positive development of bilateral ties in politics, national defence-security, economics-trade-investment, and people-to-people exchange. Both nations have shared strong political trust, candidly discussing issues of shared concern and designing an action plan for 2015-2017.

The ambassador, however, also spoke of limitations to their bilateral relationship, including trade and investment rates below expectations.

Nghi suggested creating a more conducive business environment for enterprises, loosening trade barriers and quarantine procedures for each other’s products. He asked Australia to consider relaxing quarantine requirements for Vietnamese fresh and frozen shrimp, and accelerate the approval of importing Vietnamese fresh lychee.

Besides, Vietnam and Australia still have differences in their points of view on democracy and human rights. The ambassador noted that the two countries have held 11 rounds of talks over these issues in a constructive, straightforward and understanding manner.

He took the occasion to call on Australian politicians and researchers to visit Vietnam to get a first-hand view of its human rights situation.

The ambassador made a number of recommendations to stimulate the progression of Vietnam-Australia ties, including facilitating high-level visits and exchanges while effectively and comprehensively realising commitments in politics, security-defence, economics, science-technology, education, and training.

In Nghi’s view, underperforming cooperative areas—such as science and education—should be boosted. At the same time, both countries should enhance viewpoint coordination and mutual support at regional and global forums, such as the ASEAN Regional Forum, Asia-Europe Meeting, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, and United Nations.

Nghi stated confidently that the relationship between Vietnam and Australia has a bright future, thanks to the dedication of their governments and people.-VNA