Vietnam, Czech Republic eye enhanced cooperation hinh anh 1Chairwoman of Vietnam’s National Assembly Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan and Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Bohuslav Sobotka meet in Prague on April 12. (Photo: VNA)

Prague (VNA)Chairwoman of Vietnam’s National Assembly Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan and Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Bohuslav Sobotka agreed that the two countries should enhance cooperation during their meeting in Prague on April 12.

Ngan is visiting the Czech Republic on April 12-14 as part of her European tour, which began on April 6.

Speaking at the meeting, the top Vietnamese legislator said despite progress in cooperation between Vietnam and the Czech Republic in trade and investment, the two nations should work to unleash their potential.

Two-way trade reached 249 million USD last year and the Czech Republic ranked 45th out of 116 countries and territories investing in Vietnam with 34 investment projects, worth approximately 90 million USD, she noted, proposing the two countries increase visits to each other for market research and improve the work of the Vietnam-Czech Intergovernmental Committee for economy and science-technology cooperation.

Ngan suggested her host stimulate Czech investment in Vietnam’s fields of interest, including renewable energy, metallurgy, mining, infrastructure development, supporting industries, environment, textile & garment and mechanical and electronic manufacturing.

The Czech PM said that Czech exports to Vietnam only made up about 10 percent of bilateral trade and it is time to boost partnerships in trade, commerce and investment.

Aside from strengths in foreign direct investment, the Czech Republic has advantages in supplying advanced technologies in mining and energy, Sobotka said, adding that the European country wishes to join projects in infrastructure development, healthcare, pharmaceuticals and information technology in Vietnam.

On education, Chairwoman Ngan hoped the Czech Republic will push cooperation agreements and collaborative training projects in fields of its strength, like engineering, agriculture, medicine and pharmacy, electrics and electronics.

She also asked for continued support from the Czech government in strengthening the comprehensive partnership between Vietnam and the European Union (EU) and hoped it would push the ratification of the Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement and the EU’s recognition of Vietnam as a market economy.

In security-defence, Ngan expected the Czech Republic would assist Vietnam in training cyber-security specialists. She also affirmed the National Assembly of Vietnam’s support for the two governments to ink deals on combating crime and on the transfer of convicts.

Echoing his Vietnamese guest, PM Sobotka said Czech enterprises look forward to opportunities in security-defence.

They also agreed to fast-track the launch of streamlined visa processing between the two countries. Sobotka said he expects the number of Czech tourist arrivals to Vietnam to grow considerably once Vietnam simplifies the application process for short-stay visas.-VNA