Vietnam’s Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang and Indonesian Minister of Trade Giata Irawan Wirjawan have co-cahired the sixth meeting of the Vietnam-Indonesia Joint Commission on Economic, Scientific and Technological Cooperation held in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Sept. 17-18.

At the two-day event, participants at the conference acknowledged new growth in two-way trade, increasing from 2.1 billion USD in 2009 to 4.7 billion USD in 2011 and reaching 2.57 billion USD in the first seven months of 2012.

Both sides emphasised the importance to encourage the private sector to promote economic and trade activities and agreed to boost cooperation on trade promotion in respective country as well as a third country.

The two ministers signed the minutes of the meeting and a protocol to amend the Memorandum of Understanding on rice trade between Vietnam and Indonesia in which Vietnam agreed to sell 1.5 million tonnes of white rice to Indonesia each year from the start of 2013 to the end of 2017.

On investment, both sides encouraged cooperation in investment promotion through sharing information on foreign investment policy and environment, and exchanging delegations to grasp investment opportunities in respective country as well as training foreign investment management staff.

Regarding energy, oil and gas and coal mining, the two sides encouraged the Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group ( PetroVietnam), Pertamina Oil and Gas Company of Indonesia and Petronas of Malaysia to boost tripartite cooperation mechanism which may serve as a model within ASEAN.

Vietnam proposed Indonesia to facilitate PetroVietnam’s existing oil and gas exploitation projects with its Indonesian partners, including Natuna D-Alpha project. Both sides encouraged PetroVietnam to increase cooperation in exploiting crude oil, gas and coal as well as providing oil and gas services in Indonesia.

Vietnam suggested Indonesia support its businesses in importing Indonesia’s coal and investing in coal mining industry in the country and proposed Indonesia maintain a long-term, stable coal supply for Vietnam’s electricity plants.

The Indonesian side welcomed the involvement of Vietnamese importers and investors in mining sector in Indonesia in accordance with Indonesia’s laws and regulations and proposed that the nation will supply thermal coal to Vietnam’s power plants and import high-carbon anthracite coal from Vietnam.

In terms of fisheries, both sides reaffirmed the importance of fishing cooperation in each country’s economic growth, and encouraged bilateral cooperation between the two countries and among localities in the field.

In agriculture, they agreed to speed up the signing of an MoU on cooperation in farm produce between Indonesia ’s Ministry of Agriculture and Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to lay foundations for cooperation in food diversification and reserves.

The Vietnamese side acknowledged Indonesia’s proposal to establish an agency to manage Robusta coffee supply sources and a mechanism for coordination in Robusta coffee exports.

At the meeting, the two sides also discussed and reached consensus on the contents, mechanisms and forms to boost bilateral cooperation in transports, education and training, healthcare, tourism and culture, banking, industry, construction, information and communication technology.

At the plenary session, both sides touched upon international and regional financial and trade issues of mutual concern.

They affirmed their determination to boost close cooperation to realise the ASEAN Economic Community by 2015 and shared their desires on Vietnam-Indonesia strategic partnership in the time to come.

Speaking with the press after the session, Minister Hoang and his Indonesian counterpart emphasised the potentials and prospects for the two countries’ bilateral cooperation in economics, trade and investment.

Both sides agreed that the next meeting will be held in Vietnam in the next three years.

Earlier, on Sept. 17, Minister Hoang had a meeting with Indonesian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Jero Wacik to discuss orientations for bilateral cooperation in energy, coal and minerals.-VNA