Vietnam and Italy signed an aviation cooperation agreement in Rome on June 21, a move that is expected to facilitate development in tourism and trade between the two nations.

The agreement, inked by Vietnamese Deputy Transport Minister Pham Quy Tieu and Italian Deputy Foreign Minister Bruno Archi, covers aviation security and safety, customs regulations, transport fees and trade opportunities.

Addressing the ceremony, Archi stressed that the agreement will provide a basic foundation for the two partners to carry out specific steps in the aviation sector, thus fueling economic links that match bilateral traditional friendship.

He said economic cooperation will be a key theme during his July visit to Vietnam, which will be accompanied by a group of representatives from Italian businesses.

Tieu emphasised that the agreement will open a new chapter in the cooperation between Italy and Vietnam, especially in transport - a key sector that is expected to transform Vietnam into a modern-oriented industrialised nation by 2020.

The minister expressed his hope during the upcoming visit the two sides will discuss working together to develop navigation systems. The Vietnamese side will dispatch a delegation to Italy to conduct further research in this field soon.

At present, some Italian aviation firms have been licensed to transport goods from Vietnam to Italy and vice versa.
Italy now ranks fifth among European Union countries in the number of tourists visiting Vietnam . The rate is forecast to climb following the agreement.
Earlier, on the same day, Tieu and Archi discussed opportunities for partnership in other areas of their strengths and agreed that promoting bilateral aviation and maritime cooperation will facilitate tourism, trade and investment cooperation between the two countries./.