Vietnam, Myanmar hold deputy ministerial-level political consultation hinh anh 1At the political consultation (Photo: VNA)
Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnamese Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Minh Vu and Permanent Secretary of the Myanmar Ministry of Foreign Affairs Soe Han co-chaired the eighth annual political consultation at the deputy ministerial level in Hanoi on November 14.

The two sides discussed measures to further promote the Vietnam-Myanmar comprehensive cooperative partnership, especially in realising high-level agreements and documents signed in the recent past.

They expressed delight at growing ties in diverse areas, particularly in trade and investment. Two-way trade surged to nearly 860 million USD in 2018 from 152 million USD in 2010, and the figure is expected to reach 1 billion USD next year,

Vietnam is now the seventh largest foreign investor in Myanmar with 18 projects worth nearly 2.3 billion USD. Encouraging results have also been seen in bilateral collaboration in the fields of telecommunications, tourism, energy and transportation.

The two sides shared the view that apart from historical and cultural similarities, both Vietnam and Myanmar are members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and important sub-regional mechanisms. Lying in Asia-Pacific, they hold strengths in agriculture, energy, mining and tourism, among others.

Admitting difficulties in expanding cooperation due to different mechanisms, laws and regulations, both sides proposed several initiatives, including establishing an annual dialogue mechanism between Myanmar high-ranking leaders and Vietnamese enterprises, as well as between the two foreign ministries’ units to share professional experience and discuss ways to bolster bilateral ties.

On regional and global issues of mutual concern, Soe Han said the regional and global situation is developing complicatedly with uncertainties as world powers are competing for influence in Asia-Pacific.

He suggested that ASEAN should enhance solidarity and step up the building of the ASEAN Community, affirming its position and central role in the regional architecture.

Vu spoke highly of Soe Han’s information about the recent Rakhine situation and the Myanmar government’s efforts in addressing the issue, adding that every solution should be considered thoroughly with humane approach as a centre.

Both sides highly valued the cooperation between the two foreign ministries over the past years, especially in arranging high-level visits and successfully holding cooperation mechanisms, including the ninth session of the Joint Committee for Bilateral Cooperation.

They expressed satisfaction about the conclusion of negotiations and upcoming signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation between the two foreign ministries with practical contents that suit the new situation.

During a courtesy call on Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh, Soe Han affirmed that Myanmar will actively support Vietnam in assuming the role of ASEAN Chair next year and a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the 2020 – 2021 tenure.

Myanmar will also work closely with Vietnam on common regional security issues, including the East Sea issues as well as the use and management of Mekong River water resources, he said.

The official conveyed the Myanmar President and the State Counsellor’s invitations to high-ranking Vietnamese leaders to visit the country at convenient time.

The two sides agreed to hold the ninth political consultation next year in Myanmar./.