Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Belgian counterpart Charles Michel (right) (Source: VNA)
Brussels (VNA) – Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Belgian counterpart Charles Michel agreed on ways to strengthen bilateral ties across politics, economics, culture, education-training, and science-technology during their talks in Brussels on December 2.

Looking back on trade and investment ties, they said bilateral trade saw good growth, hitting 2.3 billion USD last year and 1.6 billion USD in January-September, and Belgium’s investment in Vietnam amounting to 420 million USD in 59 projects.

However, the two PMs said, there is some room to improve these ties given the potential and aspiration of both countries.

Both sides agreed to accelerate the building and implementation of projects in the fields of logistics, transport, green growth and outer space, while further facilitating import of each other’s goods.

The Belgian PM suggested steering bilateral development cooperation towards climate change mitigation.

He congratulated Vietnam and the European Union (EU) on officially concluding negotiations on their free trade agreement (FTA).

Host and guest consented to join hands to boost Vietnam-EU ties, push forward the EU’s ratification of the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement and the early signing of the Vietnam-EU FTA.

PM Charles Michel also congratulated Vietnam on its election to the United Nations Socio-Economic Council for the 2016-2018 tenure.

The two PMs pledged to continue working closely together at the UN, the ASEAN, the Asia-Europe Meeting and the International Francophone Organisation.

Touching upon regional and global matters of shared concern, the Belgian PM stressed that Belgium supports the settlement of the East Sea issue by peaceful means in line with international law, the UN Charter, the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, towards reaching a political and legally-binding agreement among parties concerned.

The host believed that the visit by the Vietnamese PM would deepen friendship and all-around collaboration between Vietnam and Belgium for the sake of peace, stability, cooperation and prosperity in the region and the world.

The Vietnamese PM, for his part, thanked the host for his support of bilateral links over the past time and invited the Belgian government leader to visit Vietnam in the foreseeable future.-VNA