The Vietnam visit by Chinese Politburo Standing Committee member and Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli is beneficial to bilateral ties across various domains, Chinese Deputy Minister of Commerce Zhong Shan told a press conference in Hanoi on July 18.

China is willing to extend the scope of bilateral cooperation and the import of made-in-Vietnam farm produce and competitive goods, Zhong emphatically stated.

The Chinese deputy minister noted that two-way trade soared 27 percent annually to 83.6 billion USD last year, an 11-fold increase from 10 years ago. In the first half of this year, the figure reached 42.29 billion USD, up 16.6 percent year-on-year.

He said China has been the largest trade partner of Vietnam for 11 years in a row while Vietnam has become the second largest trade partner of China in the ASEAN.

As of the end of 2014, total Chinese investment in Vietnam hit 8 billion USD, mostly in the areas of electricity, steel, textile, light industry and agriculture.

He cited as example several Chinese-invested key projects in electricity, transport, metallurgy and chemicals underway in Vietnam, including Vinh Tan 1 thermal power plant in the form of build-operate-transfer and Cat Linh-Ha Dong elevated railway, among others.

On the tourism front, China has been the largest source of travellers to Vietnam over the past 15 years, with 1.95 million arrivals in Vietnam in 2014, while 1.71 million Vietnamese visited China that same year, thus raising mutual understanding and fostering traditional friendship between the two countries.

Also at the event, Vice Chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission of China Hu Zucai suggested the two countries continue to cooperate in infrastructure, trade and investment, as well as boosting cultural, academic and youth exchanges.

Hu informed that the commission, together with the Vietnamese Ministry of Planning and Investment, has developed a mechanism designed for a joint working group on overland infrastructure.

According to him, there remains vast room for their coordination in energy and machinery manufacturing.-VNA