Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on July 10 received visiting US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who spoke highly of Vietnam’s socio-economic development achievements.

At the meeting, Clinton said she is pleased with the developments of the two countries’ relationship in areas of bilateral cooperation as well as at regional and international forums.

The US Secretary of State said that the two sides need to continue discussions on upgrading their relationship to the level of strategic partners.

She affirmed that the US Government pledges to respect Vietnam ’s independence and sovereignty, and supports a developed and prosperous Vietnam which has an important role in regional and international arenas.

The US attaches importance to strengthening multi-faceted cooperation with Vietnam, including economic, trade and investment ties, she added.

Applauding Clinton’s visit, PM Dung expressed pleasure with the results of the Vietnamese-US relationship, which he said, had brought benefits to both nations.

He affirmed that the two sides should continue their efforts to promote bilateral ties on the basis of respecting independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, as well as contributing to peace, stability and development in the region and the world at large.

PM Dung noted that Vietnam prioritises fostering cooperation with the US in the fields of economics, trade, investment, science, technology, education-training, health, environment and humanitarian issues.

The US Secretary of State expressed her concurrence with PM Dung’s viewpoints.

Dung and Clinton also exchanged views on recent developments in the East Sea and Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS) cooperation. They emphasised the importance of maintaining peace, stability and cooperation as well as ensuring maritime freedom, security and safety in the East Sea .

The two sides affirmed that the East Sea sovereignty disputes should be solved by peaceful means on the basis of international laws, particularly the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), and strict implementation of the Declaration on Conduct of the Parties in the East Sea (DOC) towards a Code of Conduct (COC) in the East Sea.

The US Secretary of State said she is concerned about recent developments in the East Sea and affirmed that the US Government strongly supports the rights of coastal states in their exclusive economic zones and continental shelves under the 1982 UNCLOS.

On the same day, PM Dung received representatives from more than 20 US businesses who accompanied Clinton to Vietnam .

At the reception, Dung said that the visit represents the US Government and business community’s attention to strengthening economic, trade and investment cooperation between the two countries.

The Vietnamese and US businesses need to boost cooperation and tap into their vast potential, satisfying the two countries and businesses’ best interests, Dung said.

The Government leader affirmed that Vietnam will create favourable conditions for foreign investors, including those from the US , to operate effectively in the country.

The US businesses expressed their belief in Vietnam ’s cooperation prospects, saying that they want to expand operations in Vietnam, contributing to strengthening the friendship and cooperation between the two countries./VNA