Vietnam has always considered fostering the comprehensive relationship with Japan as one of the top priorities laid down her external policy, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has stated.

The Deputy PM made the remarks on October 9 during his meetings with President of the House of Councillors Yamazaki Masaaki and Speaker of the House of Representatives of Japan Ibuki Bunmei, as part of his ongoing working visit to Japan.

He affirmed that the two countries’ ties have made robust progress, evidenced by the Extensive Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity in Asia that was upgraded since March, 2014.

Deputy PM Phuc said he hopes the two sides will enhance cooperation at international and regional forums while proposing Japan support Vietnam’s standpoint in safeguarding peace, stability, safety and security at sea and dealing with conflicts with peaceful measures based on international law.

He suggested the Japanese congress support its Government to maintain the Official Development Assistance (ODA) for Vietnam, focusing on such areas as infrastructure, competitiveness enhancement, administrative reform, climate change response, and poverty reduction.

On the occasion, he conveyed National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung’s invitation to these Japanese leaders to attend the 132 nd General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU- 132 ) in Vietnam in March 2015.

The Japanese legislators agreed that the two countries need to step up cooperation in economics, trade and investment as well as people-to-people exchanges to further promote mutual understanding for the development of the two countries in particular and the prosperity of Asia in general.

President of the House of Councillors Yamazaki Masaaki said he will work to speed up the policy to provide more ODA for Vietnam in the future.

The Japanese side emphasised that all the regional nations need to abide by international law and not to accept the use of force to alter the status quo.

At his meeting with Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yuko Obuchi, Deputy PM Phuc said he expected that the two nations will work together with a view of doubling the bilateral trade turnover by 2020.

He proposed Japan encourage its small and medium-sized enterprises to invest in Vietnam and promote cooperation in the oil and gas industry during the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations.

Meanwhile, the minister urged the two sides to continue implementing the Vietnam-Japan Joint Initiative to improve the investment environment in Vietnam.

She revealed that Japanese businesses were interested in the automobile and spare part industry in the Southeast Asian country and wished to work with the Vietnamese side in making an action plan for this field.

Also on October 9, Deputy PM Phuc met with Chief Justice of Japan’s Supreme Court Itsuro Terada and Minister of Justice Midori Matsushima, during which he expressed pleasure at the growing legal and judicial cooperation between the two countries, including the sound connection between the two supreme courts.

Itsuro Terada said the Supreme Court of Japan is keen on further fostering cooperation with its Vietnamese counterpart, as well as establishing partnership in personnel training and sharing experience.

At the meeting with Minister of Justice Midori Matsushima, Deputy PM Phuc thanked the Japanese side for support in training legal officials and lawyers.

Midori Matsushima pledged that Japan will continue helping Vietnam in personnel training for the legal sector. She also revealed that her country is considering Vietnam’s proposal for negotiations on a mutual legal support agreement.

During a meeting with Chairman of the Japan-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarians Alliance Toshihiro Nikai the same day, Deputy PM Phuc said he hopes Japanese congressmen will come up with more initiatives to bolster the friendship and partnership between the two legislative bodies.-VNA