Vietnam, Indonesia enjoy fruitful strategic partnership: Diplomat

Since Vietnam and Indonesia set up their strategic partnership on June 27, 2013, the bilateral relations have been growing in a strong, comprehensive and steady manner, stated Vietnamese Ambassador to Indonesia Ta Van Thong.
 Vietnam, Indonesia enjoy fruitful strategic partnership: Diplomat ảnh 1Vietnamese Ambassador to Indonesia Ta Van Thong (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Since Vietnam and Indonesia set up their strategic partnership on June 27, 2013, the bilateral relations have been growing in a strong, comprehensive and steady manner, stated Vietnamese Ambassador to Indonesia Ta Van Thong.

In an interview granted to Vietnam News Agency on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Vietnam-Indonesia strategic partnership, the diplomat noted that Party General Secretary and State President Nguyen Phu Trong’s visit to Indonesia in 2017 marked an important milestone in the bilateral relations, as it was the first by a top Party leader of Vietnam to Indonesia after that by President Ho Chi Minh in 1959.

In 2018, Indonesian President Joko Widodo paid a state visit to Vietnam, while PM Phuc also visited Indonesia the same year. In 2021, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, PM Chinh chose Indonesia for his first trip abroad after taking office. Last year, President Nguyen Xuan Phuc also made a state visit to Indonesia, he noted.

The diplomat said that the action programmes signed between the two sides have deepened bilateral partnership in all fields, from politics, diplomacy, defence-security to economy, tourism, culture and people-to-people exchange. They have finalised a joint action programmes for the 2024-2028 period for signing at an early date. Meanwhile, other cooperation mechanisms such as committee for bilateral cooperation at the deputy foreign minister level, and joint committee for economic, science-technology cooperation have also been implemented.

Indonesia is currently the third largest trade partner of Vietnam in the region, while Vietnam is the fourth biggest of Indonesia. Two-way trade tripled in the 2013-2022 period to over 14.4 billion USD in 2022. The figure reached 4.2 billion USD in the first four months of 2023, with Vietnam’s exports making up 1.6 billion USD. This year, two-way trade is expected to reach or exceed 15 billion USD.

The two sides have enjoyed fruitful defence-security cooperation, with many high-level visits. The Vietnam Coast Guard signed a cooperation agreement with the Indonesian Maritime Security Agency in December 2021.

Vietnam and Indonesia have cooperated in aquatic farming, and fisheries exploitation and processing.

Bilateral cooperation in culture, education-training, tourism and people-to-people exchange has also been strengthened. Localities of the two sides have set up their partnership. Each year, the two countries welcome about 70,000-80,000 visitors from each other, he said, adding that Vietnam and Indonesia have resumed a number of direct air routes and are considering the opening of new ones.

Regarding the focus of the Vietnam-Indonesia cooperation in the time to come, Ambassador Thong said that along with the sound partnership in politics-diplomacy, bilateral economic cooperation has also seen strong growth.

In the time to come, the two sides will continue to promote their traditional friendship, paving the way for the development of the bilateral strategic partnership to a new height, he said, adding that the signing of a new joint action programme for the 2024-2028 period will help the two sides further beef up their already sound partnership, while opening new cooperation opportunities in new areas such as energy transition, digital transformation and infrastructure building.

Ambassador Thong highlighted the bright prospects of economic cooperation between Vietnam and Indonesia, the world’s 16th biggest economy, especially in trade and investment.

Mentioning major priorities and orientations in the Vietnam-Indonesia partnership in the future, the diplomat underlined that the two sides will continue to collaborate closely at multilateral organisations and forums, while maintaining and promoting existing cooperation mechanisms, coordinating policies following Indonesia’s priorities, increasing delegation exchanges, and further promoting collaboration in defence-security.

At the same time, the two countries will continue to strengthen cooperation in economy, trade and investment, expanding bilateral ties to new and promising areas, and giving more incentives for businesses to encourage them to explore each other’s market, he said.

Vietnam and Indonesia will also bolster ties in culture, education, tourism and people-to-people exchange, with the opening of more air routes connecting tourist destinations in the two countries, stated the ambassador.

Regarding cooperation between the two countries within the ASEAN, Ambassador Thong held that the relations between Vietnam and Indonesia are important to the establishment of the ASEAN Community and the role and position of the ASEAN in the current regional architecture. Indonesia was the first to support Vietnam to join the ASEAN.

As active members of the association, the two countries have worked hard together for the development of the ASEAN Economic Community, he said.

The diplomat noted that in ASEAN, Indonesia is the largest market with more than 280 million consumers, and Vietnam ranks third with 100 million people and an impressive economic growth.

During the COVID-19 period, Vietnam, as the ASEAN Chair, coordinated closely with other ASEAN member countries, including Indonesia, to make positive contributions in responding to the pandemic, recovering the supply chain, ensuring a safe environment for production and business activities, and promoting the self-reliance and intra-bloc strength of the association, he said.

As the ASEAN Chair in 2023, Indonesia has focused on speeding up recovery of the member countries, overcoming challenges amid the difficult and unexpected developments in the world economic situation, stated the ambassador./.

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