Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang and Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono officially announced the upgrade of Vietnam-Indonesia relations to a strategic partnership during their talks in Jakarta, Indonesia on June 27.

The talks took place following a state welcome ceremony held the same day for the Vietnamese President on his official State visit to Indonesia at the invitation of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

The upgrade of the Vietnam-Indonesia relations to a strategic partnership is grounded on the traditional friendship and all-faceted cooperation that have unceasingly grown in the past 60 years, the two leaders said.

It aims to bring the two countries’ ties to a new height, for the sake of each country’s people as well as for peace, stability, cooperation and prosperity in the region and the world, the Presidents noted.

Regarding politics, both leaders agreed to further their traditional friendship and trust through regular exchanges of all-level delegations, continuing the effective implementation of existing cooperation mechanisms, pushing up the implementation of the “Action Plan for the 2012-2015 period.

The Indonesian side agreed to soon set up a Vietnam-Indonesia Friendship Association to further beef up people-to-people exchanges in the new context, particularly raising the understanding of the two countries’ youth on the traditional ties nurtured by both nations.

Touching upon their economic, trade and investment bond, the two leaders shared the same view that two-way trade has been recording fine growth with greater balance in trade, agreeing to strive for bilateral trade surpassing 5 billion USD by 2015 and 10 billion USD by 2018.

To match the untapped potential of each nation as well as the level of their newly-established strategic partnership, both leaders suggested the two sides’ relevant ministries and agencies foster promotion measures and offer favourable conditions for businesses to invest in either country.

Reviewing other areas of cooperation such as energy, agro-fishery, aquaculture and education-training, which have been successfully developing, the two leaders reached consensus on elevating bilateral cooperation in food security, jointly carrying out projects in oil and gas, coal and mining.

They agreed to intensify the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding on Fishing and Sea-related Issues to, on one hand, tap the potential of bilateral cooperation in this field, and on the other hand, to closely coordinate in dealing with issues relating to fishermen and fishing boats that encroach each side’s territorial waters on the basis of humanity and friendship.

Both sides showed their support for a temporary solution, if needed, when the two sides discuss the final agreement on demarcation of economic exclusive zones.

Moving to defence-security cooperation, the two leaders reached unanimity on starting negotiations to soon sign rules on joint patrols between the two countries’ naval forces in contiguous waters and immediately make the patrols a reality, helping maintain peace and security at sea.

They saw eye to eye in the possible establishment of appropriate dialogue mechanisms on policies on security and defence, underscoring the importance of strengthening cooperation in the defence industry, fighting terrorism and other non-traditional security threats.

Relating to other issues, the two leaders said they will continue boosting the consultation mechanism and tighten their same viewpoints at regional and international forums, especially in ASEAN and the UN.

They agreed to join efforts with other ASEAN countries to build an ASEAN Community by 2015. Vietnam sealed its support for Indonesia’s Chairmanship of APEC 2013, expressing its wish that Indonesia will back Vietnam to host APEC 2017.

On the East Sea issue, the two leaders reconfirmed the importance of peace, stability, safety, maritime security and freedom at sea, solving disputes by peaceful means, refraining from using or threatening the use of military force, respecting international law including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), fully implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and soon finalising a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).

Both illustrated their mutual support for ASEAN's Six-Point Principles on the East Sea and welcomed the Joint Statement of the 15 th ASEAN-China Summit on the 10th anniversary of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) as well as the concrete steps following the issued statement.
After the talks, the two leaders witnessed the signing of a series of agreements in various realms, including extradition, legal assistance, energy, finance and agriculture.

Speaking highly of the first state visit by the Vietnamese President to Indonesia since 2001, the host said that the fruitful outcomes of the visit will further consolidate the traditional friendship and all-around cooperation between the two countries.

He hosted a banquet in honour of visiting President Truong Tan Sang.

Economic cooperation between the two countries has also yielded positive results with two-way trade exceeding 4.6 billion USD in both 2011 and 2012 despite the gloomy global economic situation.

In the first six months of this year, the two countries enjoyed two-way trade of about 2.1 billion USD.-VNA