Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue (R) and Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Korea Hong Nam Ki at the dialogue (Photo: VNA)

Seoul (VNA) – Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue and Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Korea (RoK) Hong Nam Ki co-chaired the first dialogue on economic cooperation at deputy prime minister level in Seoul on June 21.

The event aimed to realise the initiative of forming a high-level economic dialogue mechanism between the two countries, which was presented by RoK President Moon Jae-in during his official visit to Vietnam in March 2018.

Vietnam and the RoK have implemented a number of effective economic cooperation mechanisms in different areas and at different levels.

As the two countries’ cooperation has been broadened, their economic ties should be managed and coordinated by Government-level leaders. Therefore, President Moon’s initiative is expected to help expand bilateral economic partnership for mutual benefit.

Deputy PM Hue said that the outcomes and agreements reached during the dialogue are significant to orienting the Vietnam-RoK economic collaboration in the future.

After nearly 30 years of diplomatic relations, the two countries have seen great progress in their comprehensive cooperation, reflected by deeper mutual trust and understanding and the establishment of the comprehensive strategic partnership, he said.

He noted that the RoK is now the leading foreign investor of Vietnam with annual trade revenue of about 66 billion USD.

Each year, the RoK provides about 40 million USD of non-refundable aid for Vietnam, along with 300-400 million USD in ODA.

Currently, 7,000 Korean firms are operating in Vietnam, while nearly 50,000 Vietnamese are working in the RoK, he added.

For his part, Deputy PM Hong Nam Ki stressed the need to seek to foster cooperation in economic development to continue developing the two countries’ ties.

During the dialogue, the two sides agreed on a number of cooperation initiatives and contents in trade-investment; finance-banking and development cooperation; infrastructure, construction and energy; industry, agriculture, science-technology and information and communication technology; health care and labour.

The two sides agreed to strengthen coordination to improve bilateral trade, including measures to reduce Vietnam’s trade deficit with the RoK and increase Vietnamese export of products to the market.

They reached agreements to deal with obstacles facing businesses of both sides, while increasing RoK investment in prioritized areas of Vietnam.

The two countries will seek ways to promote efficiency of the RoK’s ODA, while expanding cooperation in oil and gas and power production.

Both sides also concurred on a number of initiatives to boost ties in important economic areas such as agriculture, banking, infrastructure, IT and ICT.

Following the dialogue, the two Deputy PMs signed the minutes of the dialogue, and witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding on cooperation and information exchange in banking supervision between the State Bank of Vietnam and the RoK’s Financial Services Commission, and a framework agreement between the Vietnam Oil and Gas Group and the Import-Export Bank of Korea.

The second dialogue of its kind will be held in Vietnam to review the implementation of agreements reached at the first dialogue, and seek new cooperation initiatives and agreements.-VNA