Lawyers need to further improve their competence to be able to take part in settling international disputes, especially at a time when the country is integrating globally in an intensive and extensive manner, President Truong Tan Sang has said.

He made the remarks at his working session with the Vietnam Bar Federation (VBF) in Hanoi on August 1 to review its performance in the first half of this year.

The federation should further promote its role in protecting the legitimate rights and interests of organisations and individuals and the socialist legal system, the President said.

He asked for the organisation’s greater efforts to step up the judicial reform and work together with relevant agencies and local authorities to raise public awareness of abiding by law.

Participants proposed improving the organisational structure of judicial bodies, treating both lawyers and procurators equally and increasing lawyers’ legal status.

By June, 2014, 8,675 lawyers have held practising certificates across the country. Members from the federation have defended over 54,000 criminal cases, 5,500 economic and 4,400 administrative ones over the past five years.

The VBF has also provided free legal assistance for more than 31,200 low-income people and social welfare beneficiaries.-VNA