Vietnam and the US should sustain and strengthen economic and trade links, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh said, describing these links as key to bilateral relations.
Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh (L) and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson
The Vietnamese official, who is on an official visit to the US from 20-21 April, made the suggestion at a meeting with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Advisor of the US National Security Council Herbert Raymond McMaster on April 20 in Washington DC.
He reaffirmed Vietnam’s consistent foreign policy of independence, self-reliance, diversification and multilateralisation of relations, and international integration.
Vietnam and the US boast great potential to strengthen cooperation, he said, suggesting the two sides expand links in education, training, science-technology, security-defence, and humanity, and in overcoming the consequences of war.
He stated that Vietnam is willing to work with the new US administration to reinforce and deepen the Comprehensive Partnership, based on respect for independence, sovereignty and political institutions of both nations, contributing to maintaining peace, stability, cooperation and development in Asia Pacific and the world.
For his part, State Secretary Tillerson and Advisor McMaster highlighted the flourishing development of Vietnam-US ties in recent times, expressing their belief that the relationship will become stronger.
The new US administration attaches importance to and supports its Comprehensive Partnership with Vietnam, they stressed, adding that the two sides need to enhance exchange of all-level visits to foster cooperation.
Tillerson affirmed that his country would work with Vietnam to ensure that the APEC 2017 will bring about practical results.
While comparing notes on regional and international issues, Tillerson and McMaster underlined the importance of maintaining peace, stability, security, safety and freedom of navigation in the East Sea.
The US backs the settlement of disputes in the sea by peaceful measures based on diplomatic and legal processes, in line with international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), they stressed.
At the meeting, Minh conveyed President Tran Dai Quang’s invitation to US President Donald Trump to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum in 2017 and visit Vietnam.
Tillerson and McMaster affirmed President Trump will attend the event in Vietnam.
Advisor McMaster also conveyed President Donald Trump’s invitation to Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc to visit the US.
The same day, the Vietnamese official also met US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, who affirmed the US supports Vietnam to continue receiving international development assistance loans from the World Bank in accordance with Vietnam’s development in the near future as well as cooperative activities within APEC.