Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his entourage left Tokyo on December 15, concluding a four-day official visit to Japan where he attended a commemorative summit to mark 40 years of ASEAN-Japan dialogue relations and the fifth Mekong-Japan Summit.

Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Vinh has told the press that the PM’s visit has achieved very important outcomes.

The Deputy FM said the visit is of special significance as it took place when the year celebrating the 40 th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Vietnam and Japan came to an end while the Vietnam-Japan Strategic Partnership is seeing strong development in various fields.

According to Vinh, the visit has helped deepen the fine and reliable strategic partnership between Vietnam and Japan . PM Shinzo Abe affirmed that Japan always attaches importance to relations with Vietnam and considers the country one of its top partners in the region.

The two PMs conducted two official visits and two phone talks during 2013, reflecting mutual trust and cooperation at an unprecedented level in bilateral ties, he stated.

The two sides expressed pleasure at the success of the Vietnam-Japan Friendship Year celebrating the 40 th anniversary of diplomatic relations, which contributed to consolidating and strengthening the cooperation, friendship and mutual understanding between the two peoples.

They agreed to continue increasing the exchange of all-level visits, and effectively implementing dialogue mechanisms and frameworks in a range of fields.

They also applauded the two countries’ establishment of a security dialogue mechanism between the Vietnamese Ministry of Public Security and the National Police Agency of Japan.

Deputy FM Vinh highlighted the important and practical agreement in economic, trade and investment cooperation reached during the visit, with PM Shinzo Abe pledging to maintain official development assistance (ODA) to Vietnam at the highest level, and announcing a package of around 100 billion JPY (roughly 1 billion USD) in ODA during the second half of the 2013 fiscal year.

The two leaders affirmed close coordination to early complete the building of an Action Plan for six priorised industries included in Vietnam ’s industrialisation strategy and the Vietnam-Japan cooperation framework by 2020 with a view to 2030, with a view of starting implementation soon.

Vinh also noted that Japan ’s leading economic groups reiterated their intent to maintain and increase investments in Vietnam while expressing interest in participating in Japanese projects in the country under the Public-Private Partnership ( PPP ) form.

The Deputy FM added that the two sides also agreed to step up cooperation in education, human resources training, science and technology, people-to-people exchange, health care and climate change adaptation.

They affirmed to continue collaborating at regional and international forums and mechanism and making active and constructive contributions to maintaining peace, stability, cooperation and prosperity in the region.
They stressed the importance of the sustainable management and use of water resources; ensuring peace, stability, cooperation and development in the region; guaranteeing maritime security, safety and freedom, and the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS); as well as ensuring aviation freedom and safety in line with international law and regulations of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

The two sides affirmed support of ASEAN’s efforts to build the ASEAN Community and the bloc’s key role in the regional cooperation architecture for peace, security and development.

Regarding the ASEAN-Japan Commemoration Summit and the fifth Mekong-Japan Summit, Deputy FM Vinh said the two events were successful in mapping out important orientations and concrete measures to further enhance these cooperation frameworks.

PM Dung delivered speeches at both summits, in which he put forth important proposals, contributing to their success.

At the ASEAN-Japan Summit, the Vietnamese leader affirmed Vietnam ’s consistent policy of attaching importance to the strategic partnership between ASEAN and Japan . He suggested that the two sides continue giving high priority to economic, trade and investment cooperation; and support the ASEAN Community building, the enhancement of regional linkages and connectivity, and the sustainable development of the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS), including the reasonable and sustainable management and use of water resources.

The PM called on ASE AN and Japan to increase cooperation in maintaining regional peace, security and stability, including the guarantee of maritime security, safety and freedom, the peaceful settlement of disputes on the basis of international law and the 1982 UNCLOS; fully and effectively implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and working towards the formation of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).

He expressed backing of ASEAN’s view on ensuring aviation freedom and safety in line with international law and ICAO regulations.

At the Mekong-Japan Summit, the PM suggested the two sides continue affirming their commitment and working to realise reached agreements while prioritising cooperation in environmental protection, sustainable management and use of Mekong River water resources. He urged enhancing regional connectivity with focus on improving infrastructure in the GMS and implementing traffic projects connecting the subregion and the outside.

PM Dung also proposed that the concerned parties and the Mekong River Commission promptly carry out and complete studies on the sustainable development and management of the Mekong River , including the impacts of the building of hydropower dams on its main stream.

He proposed reinforcing the mechanism for supervision and information exchange among countries and promoting public-private partnership to attract resources to socio-economic development projects in the subregion.-VNA