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Vietnam, Thailand target $20bn trade by 2020

Friday, July 24, 2015, 18:13 GMT+7
Vietnam, Thailand target $20bn trade by 2020
Vietnam's Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung (L, sitting, facing front) and his Thai counterpart (sitting next to Dung) witness the signing of an MoU on cooperation between Vietnam's Long An An Province and Thailand's Trat Province in Bangkok on July 23, 2015.

Visiting Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Thai counterpart Prayuth Chan-ocha have agreed to intensify cooperation pursuant to their countries’ strategic partnership, including taking trade value to US$20 billion by 2020. Cooperation between Vietnam and Thailand has been comprehensively flourishing, demonstrating the growing efficiency and importance of their strategic partnership, the two leaders said Thursday in a meeting in Bangkok, according to the Vietnam News Agency. The two premiers agreed to raise two-way trade to $20 billion by 2020 from $10.6 billion in 2014, given statistics that Thailand is the leading trade partner of Vietnam in Southeast Asia and is among the top 10 foreign direct investors in the country. PM Dung asked the Thai side to beef up investments in areas of mutual interest, especially sea tourism, textile-garment and footwear industries, farm produce production and processing, mechanics, chemistry, and material production. The Thai premier said his country is willing to closely work with Vietnam to tighten bilateral relations in a result-oriented fashion.

Both leaders were unanimous in strengthening collaboration in other realms like labor, culture, sports, education, aquatic products, science, and technology. They also consented to offer passenger transport services along fixed routes and promote coastal transport cooperation among Vietnam, Thailand, and Cambodia. PM Dung and his host also voiced concern over recent developments in the East Vietnam Sea that have undermined trust, peace, security and stability in the region and reiterated the importance of ensuring peace, stability as well as marine and aviation safety and freedom in the waters.

The two sides agreed that all parties concerned should strictly implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Vietnam Sea; build, sustain and bolster mutual trust; exercise self-restraint and not use or threaten to use force; settle disputes through peaceful measures in compliance with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. After the meeting, the premiers witnessed the signing of a number of cooperation agreements, including a Joint Statement on the third joint Vietnam-Thailand Cabinet meeting, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on labor cooperation, an agreement on labor recruitment, and two MoUs on cooperation between Vietnam’s Long An and Kon Tum Provinces and Thailand’s Trat and Ubon Ratchathani Provinces, respectively.

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