Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung had a busy day in Japan on Nov. 1 as he met with several Japanese leaders before touring areas hit by the March earthquake and tsunami in Miyagi prefecture.

While meeting with Speaker of the Japanese House of Representatives Takahiro Yokomichi, PM Dung expressed his sympathy with the Japanese government and people over serious losses caused by the disasters.

He stressed that one of the top priorities in Vietnam’s foreign policy is to attach importance to strengthening and consolidating the strategic partnership with Japan .

The Vietnamese Government leader spoke highly of the Japanese parliament’s effective activities in favour of Vietnam .

Applauding PM Dung’s official visit to Japan , Speaker Takahiro Yokomichi thanked the Vietnamese Government and people for their valuable support and assistance for Japan to help overcome the consequences of the disasters.

He affirmed the Japanese parliament’s support for fostering the friendship and cooperation with Vietnam in various fields, especially in economics, trade, investment, science and technology, and education and training.

Earlier, at a meeting with Speaker of the Japanese House of Counsellors Otsuji Hidechisa, PM Dung expressed his belief that the friendship and cooperation between the two countries and parliaments would be strengthened.

On the same day, the PM received leaders of the International Friendship Exchange Council (FEC) and Most Venerable Yoshimizu, who has had close relations with Vietnam over many years, especially with Buddhist followers and the Vietnamese community in Japan .

Later, PM Dung left Tokyo for earthquake and tsunami-hit areas in Natori city, in the north-eastern prefecture of Miyagi , where he presented gifts, met with local authorities and offered flowers in commemoration of the catastrophe’s victims.

Natori Mayor Sasaki Isoo expressed his deep thanks for the Vietnamese State and people’s friendship and effective assistance for the city to overcome earthquake and tsunami consequences and boost its post-disaster reconstruction.

Vietnam ’s goodwill deeds, effective assistance and warm sentiments for Japan are an evidence for the friendship and close relations between the two governments and peoples, he said.

PM Dung expressed his belief that the friendship and cooperation between Miyagi prefecture and Natori city and Vietnam and its localities in particular will continue to be consolidated and further developed in the future.

Visiting the Tohoku University in Natori city, PM Dung said that educational and training cooperation between the two nations have developed over past years through many effective programmes and projects.

Japan is now home to nearly 4,000 Vietnamese students, with 30 studying at the Tohoku University./.