The Vietnam-Cuba Inter-Governmental Committee for Economic, Commercial, Scientific and Technological Cooperation convened its 32nd meeting in Havana, Cuba on October 13, seeking ways to raise bilateral economic ties on a par with political relations.

Cuban Minister of Trade and Foreign Investment Rodrigo Malmierca Diaz said during Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s visit to Cuba in March 2014, the two countries pledged to further their traditional friendship as well as cooperation in economics, trade and investment. 

To realise the pledge, both sides signed the medium-term economic cooperation programme along with identifying specific targets and cooperative orientations for the next five years, in the view of diversifying economic and trade ties.

Reviewing the implementation results of agreements reached at the previous meetings, Minister Malmierca said bilateral trade has yet to match with potential though progress made recently, therefore the Vietnamese and Cuban Governments have determined to lift the ties to a higher level in line with their fine political relations.

Vietnam is the second largest trade partner of Cuba in Asia and is the leading supplier of rice for Cuba, the minister said, expressing hopes to receive more Vietnamese investors in oil and gas, tourism, and industry. 

At the meeting, Vietnamese Minister of Construction Trinh Dinh Dung reiterated Vietnam’s consistent stance on supporting Cuban people’s revolutionary cause and highlighted Cuba’s valuable support for the nation’s past struggle for national liberation and current development process. 

He stated that Cuba’s new economic policies and measures, especially Foreign Investment Law and preferential investment policies in the Mariel Special Development Zone (ZEDM) will lay a firm foundation for attracting foreign investment to realize socio-economic development goals.

The two sides reviewed results, discussed obstacles, difficulties and measures to be taken, and agreed key cooperative contents in the future as well as mechanisms for carrying out the signed mid-term economic cooperation programme.-VNA