Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on January 16 held talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe who arrived in Hanoi earlier on the same day for a two-day official visit.

Dung hailed Abe’s first foreign trip to Vietnam since he took office, and spoke highly of his efforts to lift the two countries’ ties to a strategic partnership for peace and prosperity in Asia.

The two PMs discussed measures and orientations to bring the bilateral friendship and cooperation to a new height, including the exchange of high-ranking leaders, closer cooperation among ministries and departments, as well as promoting the roles of dialogue mechanisms between the two sides.

They agreed to work together to effectively implement economic cooperation agreements reached by the two countries’ senior leaders, especially large-scale infrastructure projects. They agreed to promote Japanese investment in Vietnam and create a favourable investment and business environment for Japanese firms in the country.

Abe affirmed that Japan always attaches importance to further developing the strategic partnership for peace and prosperity in Asia with Vietnam.

The Japanese PM vowed to actively assist Vietnam realise its national industrialisation and modernisation goals by providing official development assistance (ODA). He informed the host of a future assistance package worth 500 million USD for Vietnam’s infrastructure projects.

He pledged to continue working with Vietnam to implement the national industrialisation strategy under the Vietnam–Japan Cooperation Framework until 2020 and with the vision towards 2030.

While discussing international and regional issues of mutual concern, both sides agreed to enhance ASEAN–Japan links. Dung said Vietnam will closely coordinate with Japan to organsie activities celebrating the 40 th anniversary of ASEAN–Japan dialogue relations.

The leaders expressed their belief that the visit will lift Japan–Vietnam relations to a new height in a comprehensive and practical manner.

On the occasion, both host and guest declared the opening of the 2013 Vietnam–Japan Friendship Year.-VNA