Deputy PM Vu Khoan: Canada wants to bolster ties with Viet Nam
Q: Would you please tell us about your assessment of the visit?
A: The success of Prime Minister Phan Van Khai's visit to Canada can be observed from different angles. From the outset, Canada gave the Vietnamese governmental delegation its highest and most special welcome. The presence of a large number of Canadian high-level State and regional leaders reflected their desire to boost bilateral relations with Viet Nam. The move helped raise Viet Nam's prestige in Canada as well as in the world.
Secondly, Canada made a strong commitment to further enhance its multi-faceted cooperative ties with Viet Nam. Canada has listed Viet Nam one of its 25 official development assistance (ODA) recipients and has helped carry out a poverty reduction programme in the southern provinces of Tra Vinh and Soc Trang. During the visit, Canada committed itself to continue its assistance to the programme, which is expected to expand to other localities such as the northern Ninh Binh province.
Canada's investment in Viet Nam is still modest with a total capital of over 200 million USD. During the visit, Viet Nam granted an investment licence to Tiberon Minerals Company, which will pour 150 million USD into a project to develop tungsten in northern Thai Nguyen province.
Canada also pledged strong support for Viet Nam's admission to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and resolved bilateral WTO negotiations with Viet Nam.
Q: Could you please give more details about what Canada wants from Viet Nam and the achievements in bilateral economic and multi-lateral cooperation?
A: The Canadian side wants Viet Nam to remove a ban on the import of Canadian beef. They also want Viet Nam to issue strict regulations on sea fishing to protect the sea's biology as it expands its economy.
The visit has seen remarkable successes in economic aspects. Canadian businesses are very interested in Viet Nam, which is reflected by the great number of participants at Viet Nam-Canada business forums. Many Vietnamese businesses have signed big contracts during these events. In addition, the Canadian side has signed a project with Viet Nam on food and agricultural products quality and control, which is very helpful for our export of farm produce. We have also signed with Canada an agreement on child adoption, which has received great public approval in Canada.
Regarding other bilateral and international issues, Canada has affirmed they will support and assist Viet Nam to successfully organise the APEC (Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum) Summit in Ha Noi in 2006. On our part, Viet Nam supports the Quebec state of Canada to host the summit of the French speaking community in 2008.
The Canadian side values the results of the US visit by Prime Minister Phan Van Khai and the Vietnamese high-level delegation.
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