Vietnam wants to join South Africa in raising two-way trade to 1 billion USD in the next few years, said Vice State President Nguyen Thi Doan.

Vice President Doan made the statement during her talks with her South African counterpart Kgalema Motlanthe in the capital city of Pretoria on May 4.

Vietnam always attaches importance to the development of the friendship and cooperation with South Africa and other African nations, Doan said, noting that bilateral trade value remains modest but is increasing rapidly.

South Africa is also Vietnam’s biggest trade partner in Africa with bilateral trade rising from 192 million USD in 2007 to 640.3 million USD last year, she added.

Vietnam highlighted South Africa’s role and position in the continent, in the Non-Aligned Movement and the United Nations, affirmed the Vietnamese Vice President.

Doan took the occasion to thank South Africa for its support to Vietnam’s full market economy and she congratulated South Africa on its re-election as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council during the 2011-2012 term and its entry to the new emerging economies bloc, BRICS.

Deputy President Motlanthe described Vice President Doan’s visit as a vivid symbol of an enhanced bilateral relationship.

He suggested the two countries’ businesses promote investment cooperation in agriculture, the footwear industry and environment to increase bilateral trade.

Both host and guest agreed to instruct their ministries and branches to implement concrete measures to further develop multifaceted cooperation, particularly in security-defence, economics, trade, culture, tourism, agriculture, science-technology and environment.

Inter-governmental cooperation programmes will be organised at the end of the year to formalise issues that were agreed by both sides, they said.

They also affirmed coordination as well as continued mutual support at international and regional forums.

Earlier, Vice President Doan attended the Vietnam-South Africa Business Forum and toured a number of cultural and economic establishments in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria./.