Vietnam values the development of ties with the UK as it sees the European country as its leading partner and gives the country a priority in its foreign policy.

Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong made the affirmation while meeting with Crown Prince Charles in London on January 23 during his official visit to the country.

He said the visit will help develop bilateral relations in a more practical and effective manner.

Prince Charles said the visit, which is taking place in the year the two countries are celebrating their 40 th anniversary of diplomatic ties, will create a strong momentum for future relations between the two countries.

The two sides expressed their pleasure with the developing relations, and suggested that the two countries increase the exchange of high-level delegations, promote cooperation in economics, trade and investment, and create favourable conditions for businesses from both sides.

They also agreed that bilateral cooperation in education-training, culture and tourism needs to be further developed in the future.

The Prince expressed his wish to strengthen cooperation with Vietnam in agricultural production, seafood exploitation, forestry development, and increase the protection of the environment and wild animals.

Prince Charles accepted Trong’s invitation to visit Vietnam .

On the same day, Trong joined an informal party with UK Foreign Secretary William Hague, during which they discussed practical issues to boost bilateral ties.

During the visit, Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and other officials accompanying the Party leader had a discussion with the UK-Vietnam Friendship Parliamentarians’ Group on Vietnam ’s situation and the outcomes of the country’s renewal process.

The delegation also attended the opening ceremony of a UK House of Commons session and heard Prime Minister David Cameron speak to the House.

The same day, Deputy PM Phuc and the Vietnamese delegation met Roger Gifford, the Lord Mayor of the City of London , and UK business representatives.

Phuc applauded the significant contributions the City of London has made to the UK economy, and said the city will play an important role in fostering economic, trade and investment ties between Vietnam and the UK .

He said he hopes more enterprises from the UK will start to operate in Vietnam , especially in the fields of high technology and infrastructure development, and share banking experiences with their Vietnamese partners.

Vietnam will create favourable conditions for UK investors to seek business opportunities in Vietnam , he affirmed.

Following the Vietnamese delegation’s departure from the UK , Party General Secretary Trong sent a message to the UK ’s Prime Minister conveying his thanks and impressions to him, the Royal Family, the Government and people of the UK , for the warm welcome the delegation received.

He expressed his belief that the strategic partnership between the two countries will promote cooperation and benefit people from both countries./.VNA