Vietnam is ready to proactively participate in and make contributions to regional and international multilateral forums on solving global issues, said a senior diplomat.

Vietnamese Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh made the statement at the General Debate of the 66 th Session of the UN General Assembly in New York on September 27.

The Vietnamese diplomat affirmed that, in an effort to broaden and deepen its relations with other countries, Vietnam will continue an independent foreign policy of peace, cooperation and development. Vietnam is a reliable friend and partner as well as a responsible member of the international community, and working for the prosperity of every nation, for national independence, global peace, democracy and social progress, he said.

“In the coming period, Vietnam is determined to step up the renewal process in a comprehensive manner with higher quality and effectiveness, step up national industrialisation and modernisation in combination with development of a knowledge-based economy,” he noted.

Regarding the world situation, Minh stressed that peace, cooperation and development remain the overriding feature of the current time. However, the international community is facing traditional and non-traditional challenges, especially climate change, natural disasters, pandemics, transnational crimes, the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and international terrorism, he said.

The minister said the world economy’s unstable recovery coupled with economic downturns in many developed countries have exposed developing ones to risks of even further unequal terms of trade, rising protectionism, dwindling financial resources and erosion of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) gains.

Recording the UN’s operation results, the Vietnamese minister stressed that the UN should further uphold its central role in international efforts to prevent conflicts and peacefully settle disputes, promote conciliation and cooperation for development and build more equitable international relations.

The UN needs to continue reforming its organisational structure and operations in a more democratic, transparent and effective manner, he added.

On the situation in Southeast Asia, Minh applauded efforts to promote peace and security in the East Sea, affirming that Vietnam is strongly committed to dialogue and confidence-building mechanisms, and stands ready to support and participate in any effort to find peaceful settlements to the disputes in accordance with international law, including the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea and acceptable to all parties concerned.

While pending such a solution, Vietnam will, along with parties concerned, strictly observe the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and welcomes the stated commitments to working together towards the conclusion of a Code of Conduct in the foreseeable future, he said.

On the same day, Minister Minh attended a meeting between ASEAN Foreign Ministers and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon during which he presented ASEAN countries’ experience in realising MDGs and put forth recommendations on UN-ASEAN cooperation in this field./.