During their talks in Hanoi yesterday, National Assembly (NA) Chairwoman Nguyen Thị Kim Ngan and visiting Speaker of the Japanese House of Representatives Oshima Tadamori voiced their hope that mutual visits and meetings between parliamentary leaders will be maintained while cooperation and dialogue between legislative agencies should be fostered.
The Japanese House of Representatives supports the realisation of the two countries’ high-level agreements, Tadamori affirmed, asking the two parliaments to step up supervising the implementation of joint programmes and projects between the Vietnamese and Japanese Governments, ministries and sectors.
Speaker Tadamori and Chairwoman Ngân appreciated the two friendship parliamentary groups’ efforts to promote the Vietnam-Japan University, which has recorded a strong start since its establishment.
They noted with satisfaction that in 2016, nearly 700,000 Japanese tourists visited Vietnam while more than 200,000 Vietnamese people chose Japan as their holiday destination. They said the two sides will continue to encourage their tourists to visit each other’s shores.
Japan also wants to cooperate with Vietnam in culture and sports, Tadamori said, adding that his country will host an international film festival in the near future and looks forward to Vietnam’s participation.
At the talks, the legislators also exchanged views on some regional and international topics of shared concern, including the East Sea issue. They emphasised the need to maintain peace, stability, safety, security and freedom of navigation and flight in and above the East Sea. They made a commitment to peacefully settle disputes, respect diplomatic and legal processes, and adhere to international law.
The Vietnamese NA leader hailed the visit, saying that it will help foster the relationship between the two countries and the two legislatures.
She affirmed that enhancing ties with Japan is one of the priorities in Vietnam’s foreign policy, noting the shared history of regular visits and meetings by officials and parliamentarian groups as well as people-to-people exchanges.
Especially, the first Vietnam visit by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko in February 2017 and the other by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe one month earlier have created a momentum for promoting the friendship and cooperation between the two countries.
NA Chairwoman Ngan suggested the two sides closely coordinate activities to mark the 45th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties in 2018.
Appreciating the two countries’ determination to double their 2016 trade of US$30 billion by 2020, Ngan stated that Japan has become Vietnam’s leading economic partner. It is the largest official development assistance (ODA) provider, the second biggest investor with 3,355 valid direct investment projects worth $42.49 billion, and the fourth largest bilateral trade partner.
More than 1,600 Japanese businesses have invested in Vietnam.
She noted that Vietnam encourages Japan’s major corporations to help restructure State-owned enterprises and get involved in the banking system through public-private partnerships (PPP).
Expressing her thanks to Japan for assisting Vietnam in overcoming war consequences, the NA Chairwoman asked Japan to provide non-refundable ODA for Vietnam to implement a joint project on dioxin treatment at the Bien Hoa Airport.
For his part, Speaker Tadamori suggested both sides further step up relations in politics and the economy.
Speaker Tadamori agreed with Chairwoman Ngan about the need to boost labour co-operation, in which Japan should increase the number of Vietnamese apprentices it receives in the fields of agriculture, fisheries and construction on the basis of Japan’s new law, which will take effect in November 2017.
In terms of trade ties, he asked the countries to implement regulations in global trade agreements, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), and voiced hopes that they will continue discussions to promote the pact.
Receiving Speaker Tadamori yesterday, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc showed his delight at the strong, comprehensive and practical gains reaped across politics, security-defence, economics, agriculture and forestry between the two countries.
PM Phuc suggested the countries to boost high-level legislative visits and contacts to exchange experience. He asked for continuous support from the guest and the Japanese parliament in the provision of ODA for large-scale infrastructure construction, human resources training and climate change response.
The Speaker expressed his hope that the two governments will speed up co-ordination to connect more co-operation and investment activities and pledged that he always supports and facilitates trade and investment activities between the two business circles as well as the provision of ODA for Vietnam.