The bilateral and traditional relationship between Vietnam and Indonesia has kept getting stronger in many fields, which will create a firm foundation for raising the level of cooperation in the future.

Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City chapter of the Vietnam-Indonesia Friendship Organisation (VIFO) Le Ton Thanh and Indonesian Consul General Bambang Tarsanto both stated this at a meeting to celebrate Indonesia’s 67 th Independence Day (August 17) held on August 29.

Ton said that Vietnam and Indonesia are always reliable partners when dealing with common issues around the region, including the East Sea . Both countries also make a lot of efforts to turn ASEAN into an important political-economic player in Southeast Asia , underlining the significant central role that the bloc plays in Asia-Pacific and the world at large.

The relationship between both countries has seen developments in various areas, he said, adding that both countries need to step up cooperation in maritime affairs, fisheries, agriculture, food safety, legal affairs, education and training, culture, tourism and energy.

They should also speed up infrastructure projects and overhaul air links to match their socio-political-economic ties, said Ton.

According to Bambang Tarsanto , Vietnam and Indonesia have a lot of potential for working together in economics, trade, investment, tourism and socio-cultural affairs.

Noting that two-way trade between the two countries in 2011 reached 4.7 billion USD, an annual increase of 53 percent, the official said that he believes this figure will reach 5 billion USD by 2015.

In education, the Indonesian government granted scholarships to 27 Vietnamese students for the 2011-2012 academic year and 23 will be admitted for the 2012-2013 academic year.-VNA