Cambodia and Vietnam held their seventh meeting on cooperation and development of border provinces on March 8 and 9 in Ho Chi Minh City, co-chaired by Vietnamese Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister cum Interior Minister Sar Kheng.
At the meeting, the two sides expressed satisfaction at the bilateral cooperation between ministries and local authorities in the border provinces, particularly in implementing safety and security in the region, developing socio-economic activities and maintaining a good relationship amongst the provinces.
|At the seventh meeting between Cambodia and Vietnam on cooperation and development of border provinces ( photo CPV website)|
The two countries also pledged to create more favourable conditions in promoting cooperation and friendship among localities.
Despite the serious effects of the global downturn, trade relations between Vietnam and Cambodia showed growth with turnover of US$2.8 billion last year, an increase of nearly 55 per cent compared to 2010.
Cooperation in agriculture, forestry and the marine sectors would be promoted by exchanging experiences, techniques and information, and providing high-yield animal breed and plant seeds.
The two sides also discussed strengthening animal quarantine, insect and disease control and illegal trade in animals and wood, which was still a problem in the border area.
Both sides agreed to celebrate 2012 as "Year of Vietnam-Cambodia Friendship”, with cultural activities, art and sports exchange programmes, and promised to speed up all pending tasks to develop the border provinces.
Joint efforts to maintain security and order inside each nation as well as the border area have also achieved positive results.
The two countries pledged not to allow any of their forces to invade or violate the other's territory.
To continue the fight against illegal immigration and inter-border crimes, the region will maintain joint patrols, support each other in securing order and hold regular meetings.
In addition, local authorities will educate border residents about the necessary regulations and take part in search for bodies of Vietnamese soldiers who had died in Cambodia.
For the next five years, the two countries have targeted to reach US$5 billion in trade by providing tax privileges for each other’s commodities; simplify custom procedures; open bank branches on the border; strengthen information exchange; implement bilateral memoranda on market watch and organise annual conferences on trade development and cooperation between the border provinces of both the countries.
Trade fairs and exhibitions, conferences and business forums would be held on a regular basis.
The master plan for markets along the border areas during the 2010-2020 periods should be completed soon and pilot projects for the border markets must run this year.
Work on defining the landmarks for the border line between the two countries will continue as well.
Regulations to manage the border markets should be researched, along with solutions to stop smuggling and trade fraud.
Cambodia praised Vietnamese investment projects in the country and pledged to conduct research on how it could give Vietnam more incentives for investment in the border area, especially for hydropower projects.
In the near future, more attention will be paid to transport infrastructure in order to create a good road system linking all economic zones and markets at the border gate.
The master plan to link transport between border provinces will be finished soon.
During the meeting, the Cambodian side praised and thanked the medical check-ups that are regularly conducted by Vietnamese doctors in their country.
The eighth meeting on cooperation and development between border provinces of Cambodia and Vietnam will be held in Cambodia in 2013.
On afternoon of March 9, Le Hoang Quan, Mayor of Ho Chi Minh City, hosted a banquet to welcome the Cambodian delegation led by Deputy Prime Minister cum Interior Minister Sar Kheng.
Also on afternoon of March 9, General Phung Quang Thanh, Minister of Defence, cordially received the Cambodian delegation led by General Nieng Fatt, Envoy of the Minister of Defence of Cambodia, after the delegation had met with Lieutenant General Nguyen Chi Vinh, Vice Minister of Defence in Vietnam.