President Truong Tan Sang met with Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka on the last day of his State visit to the Czech Republic from May 10-13 at the invitation of President Milos Zeman.

The Vietnamese President took the occasion to confirm that Vietnam continually treasures and wishes to enhance its time-honoured friendship with countries in East-Central Europe, with the Czech Republic as a priority, when implementing its foreign policy of openness, multi-lateralisation and diversification.

He said he is satisfied with the positive developments of the two countries’ political-diplomatic and economic-trade-investment ties.

The Vietnamese leader appreciated the Czech Republic for listing of Vietnam as one of the 12 prioritised markets in its 2012-2020 Export Strategy, suggesting the Czech Republic facilitate Vietnamese products in its market.

Vietnam, in turn, is willing to create favourable conditions for the Czech Republic’s advantageous goods to expand its presence in the Vietnamese market and will facilitate its investments in Vietnam in energy, telecommunications, public transportation and machinery, he added.

He also asked the Central European country to provide official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnamese projects involving the environment, forestation, waste treatment, public health and health insurance system reform.

The host described President Sang’s State visit as an important milestone in the bilateral relationship, especially as the two countries celebrate the 65 th anniversary of diplomatic ties.

Vietnam is a priority partner of the Czech Republic in Southeast Asia, he affirmed, adding that cooperation potential between the two countries has yet to be fully tapped.

As an active member of the European Union and a reliable partner of Vietnam, the Czech Republic supports Vietnam in intensifying its relations with the EU, reflected through the country’s ratification of the EU-Vietnam Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation (PCA) and its efforts to hasten the early approval of the PCA and the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).

The Prime Minister also pledged to create favourable conditions for the Vietnamese community in the country to enable them to contribute more to the bilateral friendship.

Before concluding the visit, the Vietnamese leader also received Vice Chair of the European Parliament’s Committee on International Trade Jan Zahradil in Prague.

He suggested the Vice Chair continue accelerating the European Parliament’s ratification of the PCA as well as the European Committee’s signing of the EVFTA and its recognition of Vietnam as a market economy.

President Truong Tan Sang then laid a wreath at the Vitkov National Monument and visited the National Museum.

He left Prague for Baku on May 13 for a three-day official visit to Azerbaijan.-VNA