Vietnam wishes to promote ties with Switzerland, EU

January 27, 2014 | 09:56
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Meeting with Swiss and European senior officials on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland on Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh said Vietnam is keen to boost its relations with Switzerland and EU.

Deputy PM Minh, who is also the Minister of Foreign Affairs, made the statement at a meeting with Swiss Minister and Head of the Federal Department for Economic Affairs, Education and Research Schneider Ammann.

The Deputy PM also expressed his hope that the European country will maintain its official development assistance (ODA) provision to Vietnam and increase investments in various fields, including financing, banking, insurance, high technology, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals.

Minister Ammann advised that Vietnamese agencies pay more attention to the suggestions made during his visit to Vietnam in October 2013.

The two sides discussed the negotiation progress for a free trade agreement between Vietnam and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). Both sides agreed to step up negotiations so that they can be completed before the end of this year.

Meanwhile, Deputy PM Minh and EU High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton agreed to accelerate negotiations for an EU-Vietnam free trade agreement (EVFTA).

The Deputy PM asked the EU to recognize Vietnam’s market economy and approve a comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) as soon as possible.

High Representative Ashton stressed that the EU places importance on its relationship with ASEAN and Vietnam, which is manifested by FTA negotiations.

She also said she would convey Vietnam’s suggestions on EVFTA negations to the EU Commission on Trade.


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