Vietnamese, Canadian PMs hold phone talks hinh anh 1Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh (middle) in the phone talks (Photo: VNA) 

Hanoi (VNA) – Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh held a phone talks with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau on May 19 to discuss measures promoting bilateral ties and COVID-19 response.

Trudeau affirmed that Canada attaches importance to bilateral friendship and wishes to lift bilateral comprehensive partnership to a new height.

Speaking highly of Vietnam’s role and position on international arena, which was reflected via its position as ASEAN Chair 2020 and a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the 2020-2021 tenure, Trudeau reaffirmed commitment to fostering strong cooperation in trade, development and national defence.

He vowed to continue assisting Vietnam and regional countries in access to COVID-19 vaccines via mechanisms such as ACT Accelerator, COVAX Facility and ASEAN’s COVID-19 response fund.

PM Chinh congratulated Canada on its successful fight against the pandemic. He thanked the Canadian Government and people for providing practical support for Vietnam via a gift of 120,000 N95 masks, 3.5 million CAD for ASEAN’s COVID-19 response fund and a relief package worth 700,000 CAD to help Vietnam's central region overcome disasters.

As the two countries are looking to celebrate the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties (1973-2023), Chinh suggested focusing on anti-pandemic work, with Canada facilitating Vietnam’s access to COVID-19 vaccines and offering mutual support in consular work and citizen protection.

He proposed enhancing dialogue mechanisms such as deputy ministerial-level political consultation, bilateral defence consultation, as well as stepping up the establishment of the Joint Committee on Economy and Trade to raise two-way trade to 8 billion USD in the next two years from 5 billion USD.

The Vietnamese leader said the two countries’ enterprises should tap opportunities within the framework of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership, encourage Canada to diversify investment in Vietnam, particularly in fields of Canada’s strength such as finance, innovation, sustainable agriculture, environment clean-up, and clean energy.

Apart from fostering coordination among localities and educational ties, he asked Canada to help over 20,000 Vietnamese students hit by COVID-19 and the Vietnamese community living and working in the country.

The two sides agreed to increase education ties, technology transfer and investment in pharmaceuticals and vaccines in Vietnam. The Canadian pledged to assist Vietnam in climate change response and sustainable development, particularly in the Mekong Delta and coastal regions.

They also discussed regional and global issues, including the East Sea issue, and agreed to continue working closely together at regional and global multilateral forums such as the United Nations, APEC, ASEAN and Francophone./.