Vietnamese, Malaysian foreign ministers hold virtual talks hinh anh 1Deputy PM and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh at the virtual talks with Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein on October 23 (Photo: Vietnam Government Portal)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh held virtual talks with Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein on October 23 during which the two officials agreed to increase the bilateral exchange of views and with other ASEAN member states on regional and international issues, including the East Sea.

Hishammuddin said Malaysia wants to further deepen the Strategic Partnership with Vietnam in all areas. He took the occasion to congratulate on Vietnam’s successful containment of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as its success in the positions of ASEAN Chair 2020 and non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.

He spoke highly of Vietnam’s hosting of ASEAN meetings amid the complicated developments of the regional and global situation, saying Vietnam has helped maintain ASEAN’s unity and centrality and step up cooperation between the bloc and its partners.

Hishammuddin suggested the two countries prepare all conditions for resuming direct flights between Malaysia and Vietnam at the earliest.

He expressed his sympathy over losses caused by floods in Vietnam’s central provinces, noting Malaysia stands ready to provide assistance to Vietnam within its capacity.

Minh, for his part, thanked Malaysia for its support and coordination in arranging repatriation flights bringing Vietnamese citizens home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Vietnam is committed to facilitating entry of investors, experts, managers and skilled workers from foreign countries, including Malaysia, helping enterprises to stabilise business and production, he said.

Minh also asked the Malaysian side to offer humane treatment to Vietnamese fishermen caught in Malaysia’s waters, in line with international law and based on the spirit of ASEAN solidarity. Such incidents should be settled in a constructive and cooperative approach that does not affect the good relations between the two nations, he said.

The two officials agreed to soon finalise an Action Programme for the implementation of the Vietnam – Malaysia Strategic Partnership over the next five years and that the two countries will work closely together to organise the ASEAN Summit and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings in November./.