Vietnamese, Austrian Presidents hold talks

President Vo Van Thuong and his Austrian counterpart Alexander Van der Bellen held talks in Vienna on July 24 as part of the Vietnamese State leader’s official visit to Austria.

Vietnamese, Austrian Presidents hold talks - Ảnh 1.

President Vo Van Thuong and his Austrian counterpart Alexander Van der Bellen hold talks, Vienna, July 24, 2023 - Photo: VNA

Vo reiterated that Viet Nam always wishes to foster the friendship and all-around collaboration with Austria, its reliable friend in the European Union.

He suggested both sides continue working closely together and effectively utilize the benefits of the EU-Viet Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA), including facilitating access to each other's markets for their respective strong export items.

The guest recommended Austria create favorable conditions for its firms to increase investments in Viet Nam, particularly in industries such as automobile support industries, railway, medical equipment, and pharmaceuticals.

He called on Austria to back the European Commission's removal of yellow card warning against Viet Nam's aquatic products, thus enabling the Southeast Asian nation to export them to the EU.

He also proposed Austria prioritize Viet Nam in its official development assistance (ODA) funding and issue more favorable loan policies, particularly for projects in health care, environment protection, vocational training, firefighting, and rescue operations.

Viet Nam stands ready to act as a bridge to help Austria strengthen its ties with ASEAN, he said, suggesting that Austria could play a bridging role to help enhance Viet Nam's relations with the EU.

Van der Bellen, for his part, affirmed that Austria values the long-standing friendship and multifaceted cooperation with Viet Nam, which was established in 1972.

Austria considers Viet Nam an important partner in its foreign policy in the Asia-Pacific, especially in trade and investment, he said, adding that the country wishes to further enhance bilateral relations in the fields of economy, education and culture.

Describing Viet Nam as Austria's biggest partner in Southeast Asia, the Austrian President hoped that both sides will be interested in improving the bilateral trade balance.

The Austrian President warmly welcomed the ongoing discussions about preferential loans from the Austrian Government and hoped that sustainable cooperation projects could be implemented soon.

In order to increase political trust and tap into the immense cooperation potential of the two countries, the leaders agreed to facilitate the exchange of delegations at all levels and across various channels.

They will effectively implement existing cooperation mechanisms and also study the establishment of new cooperation mechanisms that are suitable for the new context.

The two sides vowed to step up cooperation in education-training, culture-arts, and sports, and people-to-people exchange.

Both leaders vowed to continue close coordination at global and regional forums, particularly within the framework of ASEAN-EU cooperation, for the sake of peace, cooperation and development in the region and the world.

On the East Sea issue, they reaffirmed the importance of peace, stability, safety, security and freedom of navigation in the East Sea. They also expressed support for international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Following the talks, the two leaders witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation between the Vietnamese and Austrian foreign ministries./.

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