Vietnam and the UK signed 2012 Action Plan in London on March 27 to continue implementing the two countries’ strategic partnership agreement, which aims to further enhance bilateral ties to a higher level.

Vietnamese Ambassador to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Vu Quang Minh and Foreign Office Minister Jeremy Browne signed the Action Plan which set out priority areas of cooperation this year.

Under the Action Plan, the two sides will hold 2012 Strategic Dialogue on politics-diplomacy, security and defence-related issues in Vietnam and a policy planning dialogue in London to exchange views on global and regional issues. Vietnam and the UK will closely cooperate on counter-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction including preparations to be made for a Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty review conference to be held in 2015.

Vietnam and the UK also agree to substantive increase in trade and investment to meet targets of 4 billion USD of bilateral trade and 3 billion USD by UK direct investment in Vietnam by 2013. Strong links are to be developed with newly formed UK-ASEAN Business Council as well.

In the area of sustainable socio-economic development, it is agreed that South-south cooperation will be promoted through lessons learned from Vietnam’s development; enhance Vietnam-UK anti-corruption efforts forward the agreed commitments of the 10 th Anti-corruption Dialogue in context of UK’s role as a leading donor.

The two sides will cooperate to mainstream climate change in development and green growth policies. Britain will provide financial, technological and capacity building support for meteorology including transfer of weather forecast technology.

The UK also supports enhanced role for Vietnam in international climate change negotiations through capacity building and training.

The two sides agree to have regular and effective dialogues on economic reforms including state-owned enterprise reform, banking sector reform, policy and regulation, public investment and public financial reviews.-VNA

The UK will help improve educational outcomes for primary school students, especially poor and ethnic minority children, through the School Education Quality Assurance Programme (SEQAP) project. The two sides will finalise early agreement on a sustainable model for the Vietnam-UK international standard university in Da Nang city to bring it into operation.

Vietnam and the UK will work towards the signing of an MoU on the immigration information exchange committed to under the 2011 Action Plan. The UK Border Agency (UKBA) will provide support for the national flag carrier, Vietnam Airlines, and authorities to guard against document fraud and illegal migration. The UK also welcomes the establishment of the Vietnam Office of Military Attaché’ in London in 2012.

The two countries will finalise commemorative programme to celebrate the 40 th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and the UK . It is also agreed that cooperation on festival management leads to a joint international festival in 2012 /2013.

The two sides agree that in fully materialising the targets set out in the 2012 Action Plan, it will help further strengthen bilateral ties between Vietnam and the UK in the coming years, particularly given the UK be Vietnam’s one of the most important partners in European Union and in the world.

The Vietnam-UK strategic partnership agreement was signed in September 2010 during the official visit to the UK made by the then Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Gia Khiem.