Vietnam, UK to spur multifaceted cooperation

Vietnam and the UK have signed joint statements on the establishment of an international standard state university in Vietnam and enhancement of cooperation in developing public-private partnerships.
Vietnam and the UK have signed joint statements on the establishment of an international standard state university in Vietnam and enhancement of cooperation in developing public-private partnerships.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education and Training Nguyen Thien Nhan reached agreement on a UK-Vietnam state university during his talks with UK First Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills Lord Peter Mandelson on March 9. The two sides also agreed on the possible choice of Da Nang University for the plan.

The officials informed each other of the situation in their respective countries and discussed directions and specific measures to strengthen bilateral ties in the years to come, focusing on education, training, economy, trade, investment and development cooperation.

They lauded the results in education and training, considering it an important and potential cooperation field. The UK side pledged to create favourable conditions for Vietnamese students to study in the European country.

Mandelson affirmed the UK ’s support for the Vietnamese government in its pursuit of internationalisation of tertiary education and applauded the co-hosting of a high-level conference on this matter in October 2009 by the Vietnamese Ministry of Education and Training and the British Council in Vietnam .

Both Nhan and Mandelson emphasised the need to foster economic, trade and investment relations, promising better conditions for businesses from the two countries to beef up their linkages.

Nhan said Vietnam will continue to speed up economic reforms and strictly implement its commitments to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Vietnam will create good conditions for UK companies to make long-term and effective investments in the country, especially in the areas where they hold strengths such as oil and gas, finance, banking, telecoms and plane engines, he stressed.

In return, the UK vowed to facilitate the flow of Vietnamese goods into the UK and the European market. The UK confirmed its backing for Vietnam ’s efforts to boost comprehensive cooperation with the European Union (EU), as well as for the recognition of Vietnam ’s market economy.

Regarding public-private partnerships (PPP), Vietnam and the UK agreed to cooperate with other partners, including the World Bank, in making policies and developing PPP models which are suitable for Vietnam’s needs.

Nhan held a meeting with Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Ed Miliband, during which the deputy PM asked for the UK support of Vietnam ’s endeavours to realise its national target programme on climate change through exchanging information and helping with capacity enhancement and assessment of clean technology demand.

During his three-day visit, Deputy PM Nhan also met with Chairman of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Select Committee Mike Gapes, Under-Secretary of State for International Development Mike Foster and the UK-Vietnam Parliamentarians’ League.

The UK is now the EU’s biggest provider of non-refundable aid for Vietnam with around 50 million GBP a year during the 2006-2010 period. It is also the first bilateral donor in the world to sign official development assistance (ODA) commitments for Vietnam until 2015.

At these meetings, the deputy PM said the UK ’s ODA capital has been used effectively in Vietnam ’s prioritised fields, including hunger eradication, poverty reduction, health care, education and administrative reform, thereby helping the country accomplish many of the UN Millennium Development Goals.

On March 10, Nhan and his entourage visited the place where Uncle Ho worked and lived in London in early 20 th century.

The deputy PM also met with Chief Executive Michael Gerrard and Project Director Edward Farquharson of the Partnerships UK and General Director of the British Council Martin Davidson.

He also worked with leaders of leading universities and major economic groups such as Rolls Royce, visited the Embassy of Vietnam and met with Vietnamese students who are studying in the European country./.

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