Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung (R) receives Governor of Japan’s Niigata prefecture Hideyo Hanazumi in Hanoi on October 18 (Photo: baoquocte.vn)

Hanoi (VNA) – Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung received Governor of Japan’s Niigata prefecture Hideyo Hanazumi in Hanoi on October 18, noting that Vietnam attaches importance to locality-to-locality cooperation between the two countries.

Deputy PM Dung welcomed Hanazumi’s visit, which coincides with the 45th founding anniversary of Vietnam-Japan diplomatic ties. He said that bilateral friendship and cooperation are developing strongly and practically across all spheres, with increasing exchanges and political trust between the countries’ leaders.

Japan is currently a leading economic partner of Vietnam, ranking first among official development assistance (ODA) providers, second among foreign investors, third among sources of foreign tourists, and fourth among trade partners of the Southeast Asian nation, he said.

The Deputy PM said in the first eight months of 2018, bilateral trade reached 24.5 billion USD. Japan’s accumulative ODA and direct investment in Vietnam has now reached a total of 30.5 billion USD and 50.5 billion USD, respectively.

Cooperation and exchanges between the countries’ localities and people have been growing, helping to deepen mutual understanding and friendship between the Vietnamese and Japanese people, Deputy PM Dung added.

[Infographics: Vietnam - Japan relations record big development across fields]

He affirmed that Vietnam considers locality-to-locality cooperation a practical and effective collaboration channel to step up economic, trade, and labour partnerships, as well as to promote people-to-people exchanges.

The Deputy PM asked Governor Hanazumi to encourage Niigata enterprises to invest more in Vietnam in the fields they hold strengths in, such as manufacturing, agriculture, forestry, fisheries, and high technology.

The Vietnamese Government is ready to create the best possible conditions for businesses of Niigata, as well as other Japanese localities, to successfully make investment and do business in Vietnam, he stressed.

Niigata and other Japanese localities should foster ties in human resources training and education, including receiving more Vietnamese apprentices, Deputy PM Dung said, adding that cooperation in tourism, culture, and people-to-people and locality-to-locality exchanges also need to be reinforced.

For his part, Governor Hanazumi said his delegation includes representatives of many businesses, universities, and healthcare establishments, all of whom are willing to expand ties with Vietnam.

He shared the Deputy PM’s view that the two countries’ extensive strategic partnership is developing in all aspects and at all levels, including between localities. He affirmed that Niigata prefecture wants to set up closer relations with Vietnamese localities, especially in the fields of economy-trade-investment, healthcare, education, tourism, and aviation.

The official hoped that Niigata businesses investing in Vietnam will become a bridge, linking the prefecture with their Vietnamese counterparts and promoting partnership between their businesses, especially small- and medium-sized enterprises, to tap into each other’s advantages.–VNA