The Australian PM congratulated Vietnam on the tremendous achievements the nation recorded in 2020 to become a rare model of COVID-19 pandemic control and socio-economic development amid the worst global economic downturn in decades.
He said he believes that the forthcoming 13th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) will be a great success. He also congratulated Vietnam on fulfilling its role as ASEAN Chair in 2020 with the successful signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
He thanked Vietnam for its support in making the ASEAN-Australia Summit an annual mechanism.
PM Morrison said he hopes the Vietnam-Australia relations will be upgrade to a strategic partnership in 2023 in the buildup to the 50th anniversary of the bilateral diplomatic relations.
PM Phuc suggested that both sides should utilize advantages and potential of cooperation so as to become one of top 10 trade partners of each other and double two-way investment flow as a way of backing the post-pandemic recovery.
He underlined the need to soon complete and sign the Australia-Vietnam Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy (EEES), while promoting cooperation in the framework of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and RCEP as means of boosting trade and minimizing disputes.
The Vietnamese government leader asked Australia to continue giving technical support to Vietnam and further open its market for Vietnamese agricultural products such as fresh whole shrimp, longan, passion fruit, rambutan and star apple.
Vietnam hopes that Australia will incentivize large firms to invest in telecommunications, infrastructure, hi-tech agriculture, finance-banking, mining, energy, manufacturing, education, and tourism in Vietnam, while increasing the provision of ODA to Vietnam, with a focus on infrastructure, agricultural, rural and mountainous development, poverty reduction, climate change response, and high-quality human resource training, Phuc told the Australian PM.
Phuc suggested the two countries step up cooperation in military medicine, cyber security, and defence industry. He said he hopes the Australian side would offer optimal conditions for the Vietnamese community to settle in the country while keeping the Vietnamese cultural characteristics and language.
The pair affirmed that friendship and mutual understanding and trust is a strong motivation for more effective, intensive and extensive cooperation between the two nations.
PM Morrison agreed with PM Phuc on the need to continue deepening economic connectivity between the two countries, and pledged to provide Vietnam with more resources and support to enable the nation to access effective and safe vaccines.
He also affirmed continued support for Vietnam in undertaking the role of a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2021, and in conducting UN peacekeeping operations.
Morrison told Phuc that his Australia will attend a conference on women’s role in UN peacekeeping in 2021, and will work closely with Vietnam in carrying out economic development programmes in the Mekong sub-region.
He assured Australia’s willingness to become involved in tripartite cooperation mechanisms in the region involving Vietnam, Australia, Laos and Cambodia.
The two PMs consented to boost closer collaboration in fostering the ASEAN-Australia partnership to make the ties more efficient and bolstering collaboration in international and regional mechanisms and forums.
They underscored the significance of ramping up cooperation and maintaining peace, stability, and maritime and aviation security, safety and freedom, as well as ensuring legitimate rights and interest as stated in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) 1982. They stressed the need to settle disputes on the basis of international law, including the UNCLOS 1982, fully and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea and working to achieve an effective Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC) in accordance with international law, including the UNCLOS 1982.
The Vietnamese government chief hailed the outcomes of the Vietnam visit by PM Morrison in 2019, and invited the Australian PM to visit Vietnam again.
The invitation was graciously accepted by PM Morrison who expressed hope to welcome PM Phuc and his wife to Australia in the time to come.