Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung will pay a working visit to Cambodia from January 12-14 with a view to carrying forward bilateral economic, trade and investment ties.

As neighbouring countries, Vietnam and Cambodia share time-honoured relations. They officially established diplomatic ties on June 24, 1967, marking a new chapter in the history of their neighbourliness.

On the occasion of the 45th anniversary of this relationship in 2012, both countries recalled their long-standing mutual support, for which many people laid down their lives, to achieve national independence and development.

Bilateral relations have expanded across the board, evidenced by Vietnam visits from King Norodom Sihamoni in September 2012 and Chairman of the National Assembly Heng Samrin in July 2012, and Cambodia visits by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong in December 2011 and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in February 2013.

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen made a visit to Vietnam on December 26-28 last year. Earlier this month, National Assembly Chairman Hen Samrin visited Vietnam and attended the celebration of the 35th anniversary of Cambodia and Vietnam’s joint victory over the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime (January 7). Brave services from Vietnamese veterans and volunteer soldiers have strengthened Vietnam – Cambodia solidarity and friendship further.

Two-way trade is expected to surge to 5 billion USD by 2015, underpinned by deeper cooperation in fields of strength like cross-border trade, tourism, telecommunications, aviation, banking, oil and gas, industrial plants and agriculture.

The 2012 figure hit 3.3 billion USD. In the first 10 months of 2013, it rose by 8 percent year-on-year to 2.94 billion USD. Vietnam is pouring over 3 billion USD into 126 projects in Cambodia, focusing on industrial cultivation, mining, oil and gas, electricity, telecommunications, finance and banking, among others.

Strong improvements have also been seen in science, education, health care and tourism. Vietnam has offered many scholarships to Cambodian students and graduates. Despite difficulties, Vietnam assigned delegations of medical staff to border areas to offer health check-ups.

Bilateral defence and security is in a good shape, with key information sharing and regular training and patrols at sea. They have also worked hard on the search for and repatriation of the remains of Vietnamese martyrs who lost their lives during the war in Cambodia.

The demarcation and planting of border markers is in progress. Both neighbours have so far pinpointed 239 out of the 314 places to plant markers, built 279 out of the 371 markers and delimited 850 out of the 1,137km of borderline.

They pledged to keep up with this job for a border of peace, friendship, stability and development.

At regional and global forums, Vietnam and Cambodia have worked closely together and engaged in cooperation mechanisms like the Cambodia – Laos – Myanmar – Vietnam Summit, the Greater Mekong Sub-region, the Ayeyawady – Chao Phraya – Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the Asia – Europe Meeting, and the United Nations.-VNA