Vietnamese, Israeli Presidents hold talks hinh anh 1President Tran Dai Quang (R) and his Israeli counterpart Reuven Ruvi Rivlin (Source: VNA) 
Hanoi (VNA) - President Tran Dai Quang and his Israeli counterpart Reuven Ruvi Rivlin expressed their determination to step up wide-ranging ties, especially in the fields of economy and science-technology, during their talks in Hanoi on March 20.

The talks took place following a welcome ceremony at the Presidential Palace that President Tran Dai Quang hosted for the Israeli President and his spouse on their State visit to Vietnam from March 19-25 at his invitation.

The Vietnamese leader warmly welcomed the visit, saying that it reflects Israeli leaders’ wish to further deepen the friendship and cooperation between the two countries.

President Ruvi Rivlin, for his part, expressed his joy to visit Vietnam for the first time and his admiration for Vietnamese people’s determination to defend national independence and their peace-loving spirit.

He said he believes that close liaison between the two governments and business communities would speed up bilateral economic and trade links.

Expressing delight at the progress of all-faceted coordination across trade, agriculture, science-technology, and training, the two leaders set economic ties as a focus and science-technology as a priority pillar in the countries’ future cooperation.

Accordingly, they vowed to lift two-way trade to 3 billion USD in the coming years by accelerating negotiations and signing of the Vietnam-Israel Free Trade Agreement (FTA), facilitating trade ties between businesses and localities, and boosting investment in hi-tech agriculture, human resources training, information technology-electronics-communications, and water treatment.

The Israeli leader committed to assisting Vietnam in treating and cleaning up soil contaminated with Agent Orange.

Host and guest also discussed ideas to push forward connections across national defence-security, culture, education-training, tourism, and between the countries’ localities.

On the political front, they were unanimous on increasing the exchange of visits and direct collaboration between ministries, agencies and localities while utilizing the effective role of bilateral cooperation mechanisms, such as the Inter-Governmental Committee and political consultation.

On regional and global issues of shared concern, the Presidents underscored the important role of cooperation in maintaining peace and stability in the world.

The Vietnamese side reaffirmed its policy of settling disputes, including the East Sea dispute, by peaceful means and full respect to diplomatic and legal processes in line with basic principles of international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Vietnam wishes for early peace in the Middle East, President Quang said, adding that the country supports every effort made by the region, the world and parties concerned to restore peace in the region based on international law and the UN resolutions towards reaching comprehensive, fair, and sustainable solutions to establishing an independent and sovereign Palestinian State which peacefully co-exists with the State of Israel.

He reiterated Vietnam’s unswerving external policy of being a friend and a reliable partner of other countries and striving for peace, independence and development.

In that policy, Vietnam highly values the development of friendship and cooperation with the Middle East countries, including Israel, and wishes to carry forward the effective and stable Vietnam-Israel ties for the benefit of the two peoples, and for the sake of peace and friendship in the Middle East, Southeast Asia and the world, he added.

Concluding the talks, the leaders met the media to inform them the outcomes of their talks.

President Quang said both sides lauded the signing of a cooperation agreement on technological innovation, research and development, which will support businesses in the field.

The host welcomed nearly 30 Israeli firms to Vietnam during the visit to attend two business forums in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, and hoped that a number of partnership contents will be reached.

The Israeli leader, for his part, stated that his visit will lay a foundation for new partnerships to improve the living conditions of the two countries’ people, especially in hi-tech agriculture, hi-tech water treatment and purification, education, health care, cyber security, national defence-security.

He believed that the potential of bilateral cooperation is huge and hoped that the bilateral FTA will be signed soon.

Israel is interested not only in bilateral trade cooperation but also in building bilateral ties on the foundation of friendship, he said. -VNA