Vietnam wants to continue working with Cambodia to boost cooperation for the mutual benefit of both countries.

The remarks were made by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung while receiving Cambodia ’s Senior Minister and Minister of Planning Chhay Than in Hanoi on February 23.

The cooperation will range in all areas, particularly in economics, trade, education-training, defence and security, politics and diplomacy.

“ Vietnam is doing its utmost to work with Cambodia to develop their bilateral friendship and raise the level of cooperation, bringing about practical benefits for both countries,” Dung stressed.

He expressed his pleasure with the level of bilateral cooperation in recent years, saying that being a close neighbour, Vietnam is pleased with Cambodia ’s socio-economic achievements.

The PM spoke of the outcomes of talks between Minister of Planning and Investment Vo Hong Phuc and Minister Chhay Than, and said that the current visit by the Senior Minister would contribute to more cooperation between the two countries.

He confirmed he would support cooperation between the Vietnamese Ministry of Planning and Investment and the Cambodian Ministry of Planning to carry out joint cooperative programmes.

Two-way trade between the two countries has seen a growth of 36-37 percent, said PM Dung, adding that with their great potential, both countries could boost cooperation in economics.

Vietnam now has 90 projects and a total investment of over 2 billion USD in Cambodia , ranking second in terms of the overseas investment.

In addition, cooperation in aviation, telecommunications, industry and rubber planting and processing have also seen developments.

Cooperation in tourism also has potential. A meeting to promote investments in Cambodia is scheduled to take place in Phnom Penh in April chaired by the prime ministers of both countries.

Minister Chhay Than said that the Cambodian leaders praised Vietnam ’s achievements in recent years and thanked Vietnam ’s leaders and its people for helping Cambodia .

Vietnam ’s support for Cambodia in domestic and international issues is also an encouragement to the Cambodian government and its people, he stressed.

Thanks to this whole-hearted assistance, Cambodia is now peaceful, stable and developing. Its people’s living conditions have improved and the poverty rate fell to 25.4 percent in 2010, the Minister added.

According to the Cambodian Trade Ministry, two-way trade between the two countries was 1 billion USD in 2010, said Minister Than, adding that more than 30 Vietnamese firms are investing in projects with a total registered capital of nearly 700 million USD.

Every year, the planning ministries of both countries have senior level meetings to promote the development of planning and public investment, he added./.