Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Dutch counterpart, Mark Rutte, have held talks to discuss measures to increase bilateral cooperation in priority areas and accelerate the implementation of their strategic partnership agreement on climate change resilience and water resource management.

The talks took place in the Hague on Sept. 28 after a ceremony to welcome Prime Minister Dung, who is on an official visit to the European country.

PM Dung affirmed Vietnam ’s increasing friendship and multifaceted cooperation with the Netherlands , one of Vietnam ’s leading EU partners, and pledged to pursue its renewal and integration.

For his part, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte affirmed his country’s wish to continue boosting multifaceted cooperation with Vietnam .

At the talks, the two PMs informed each other about their country’s socio-economic development and internal and external policies, and discussed measures to promote the two nations’ relations, especially in the prioritised areas of agriculture, seaports, oil and gas, climate change response and water resource management.

They shared views on global challenges such as climate change, food security and international and regional issues of common concern.

The two highly valued the fine development in the Vietnam-Netherlands friendship and cooperation in recent years.

In investment and trade, the Netherlands emerged as the biggest European investor in Vietnam in 2010 with 153 valid investment projects capitalised at 5.6 billion USD, and is one of Vietnam ’s leading trade partners in Europe , with two-way trade of nearly 2 billion USD in 2010 and 1.76 billion USD in the first eight months of this year.

On cooperation within the framework of strategic partnership in climate change resilience and water resource management, the two countries are implementing major cooperation programmes.

In this regard, Vietnam wants the government of the Netherlands to help build a Mekong Delta plan on coping with climate change, expand the study on the Red River delta plan, devise cooperative programmes on climate and water services to carry out the World Meteorology Organisation’s initiative. Vietnam also asked for help regarding sea dyke design, sea dyke management technology and equipment, and mangrove forest planting to protect sea dyke systems.

The two Prime Ministers agreed that the two countries have many opportunities to enhance economic trade and investment cooperation.

They also agreed to continue to strengthen existing cooperative mechanisms, particularly the Vietnam-Netherlands strategic partnership in coping with climate change and water resource management, while creating favourable conditions for trade and investment, focusing on the priority areas of agriculture, oil and gas, energy, seaports and logistics.

Prime Minister Dung invited PM Rutte to visit Vietnam . The latter accepted the invitation with pleasure and a visit will be arranged through diplomatic channels.

After the talks, PMs Dung and Rutte witnessed the signing of a protocol amending the Vietnam-Netherlands aviation transport agreement and a memorandum of understanding on building climate services between the Vietnamese Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment.

The two PMs told reporters they were pleased to see important developments in all fields in the two countries’ relations, particularly in investment and trade, cooperation in the strategic partnership on climate change resilience and water resource management.

Many prospects for bilateral cooperation are opening up for the priority areas, they said, adding that cooperation in education and health was also enhanced.

PM Rutte affirmed his support for Vietnam to increase ties with the European Union and EU member countries, and encouraged cooperation between the two countries at international forums in coping with global challenges such as climate change and food security.

The same day, they attended a roundtable meeting with CEOs of the two countries’ leading groups. They described the event as an opportunity for both sides to discuss issues on policies and measures to promote economic cooperation, trade and investment between the two countries.

Outcomes in the two countries’ relations have creating a firm basis for promoting ties with depth, sustainability, equality and for mutual benefit, they said.

They affirmed the two governments’ strong commitment to support and create favourable conditions for bisiness cooperation, investment and business in future./.