Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and his spouse arrived in Hanoi on October 21, wrapping up his working trip to attend the 12th Asia-Europe Meeting Summit (ASEM 12) and the Partnering for Green Growth and the Global Goals 2030 (P4G) Summit, and visit Austria, Belgium and Denmark from October 14-21.
During the week-long tour, the PM conducted nearly 70 multilateral and bilateral activities within the framework of the ASEM 12 and P4G Summit, held a working session with the European Commission and visited Austria, Belgium and Denmark.
At the 12th ASEM in Belgium, the PM made a speech at a plenary session themed “Reinforcing the Multilateral System: Advancing the ASEM Partnership on Global Issues”.
At the ASEM Leaders’ retreat discussing regional and global issues, the Government leader stressed that Vietnam and ASEAN member states are working closely with the international community, including ASEM member states, to maintain peace, stability, security, safety and freedom of navigation and overflight, and free trade in the East Sea which connects Asian, European and global trade.
On the sidelines of the summit, PM Phuc held 12 bilateral meetings with heads of state and country leaders, including the Mongolian President, Chinese Premier, Prime Ministers of Norway, Slovenia, Spain, the Netherlands, Poland, Finland, Russia, Egypt and the UK to discuss ways to boost bilateral ties and deal with specific issues.
Ahead of the ASEM 12, PM Phuc and his Norwegian counterpart Erna Solberg were invited to deliver speeches at the 12th Asia – Europe Business Forum, the first official event of the summit.
During the ASEM 12, under the witness of the PM, representatives from Vietnam and the EU signed the Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreement (FLEGT-VPA), laying a foundation for dealing with illegal logging and promoting legal timber trade.
Attending the first P4G Summit in Denmark, the PM conveyed a strong message of the importance of strengthening global cooperation in achieving global green growth goals till 2030.
Vietnam will foster close coordination within 4PG framework in the near future in order to successfully promote sustainable development initiatives via the implementation of the Green Growth Strategy in Vietnam and across the world, he said.
The leader also held talks with his Austrian, Belgian and Danish counterparts and EU President to make new strides in bilateral ties.
Under his witness, representatives from Vietnam and Austria, Belgium, Denmark and the EU signed 30 documents and cooperation agreements in perse areas.
During talks with the PM of Austria, which is now Chair of the EU, both sides agreed on measures to turn Austria into one of the leading European economic partners of Vietnam.
In talks with the Belgian PM, they pledged to strengthen economic ties and maintain cooperation mechanisms such as Vietnam – Belgium Joint Committee on Economic Cooperation. On the occasion, both sides officially established strategic partnership in agriculture.
While in talks with the Danish PM, the two sides debated specific measures to further deepen bilateral comprehensive partnership.
The Vietnamese leader held meetings with the King of Belgium Philippe, Danish Queen Margrethe II, President of the European Parliament, Presidents, top legislators, leaders of states and regions, and business communities. He delivered speeches at business seminars with Austria, Belgium, Denmark and the EU, with a focus on the early signing, ratification and enforcement of the EU – Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).
During another working session, EC President Jean Claude Juncker was delighted to inform the PM that on October 17, the EC agreed to submit the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) to the European Council to seek its approval for the signing of the deal in late 2018 and to the European Parliament for ratification in early 2019.
At business forums and seminars, countries’ corporate leaders wished that the EVFTA would be signed and approved at the earliest, saying that the deal will open up opportunities for Vietnam – EU economic, trade and investment ties.
The PM also met Vietnamese nationals in Austria, Belgium, Denmark and several European countries.
Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh held important meetings with leaders in charge of external relations from ASEM countries. Ministers of industry and trade, agriculture and rural development, and health held working sessions with partners to deepen bilateral relations.
The PM’s working trip has improved Vietnam’s bilateral ties with European partners, expanded multilateral diplomacy and shaped multilateral cooperation institutions while contributing to addressing global challenges.