Defence Minister Ngo Xuan Lich (L) and his Chinese counterpart Chang Wanquan in Beijing on Jan. 13
General Lich said since his visit to China in August 2016, agencies and units of the two armies have actively implemented the agreements reached between the two ministers then. Their collaboration has contributed to the stable, healthy and sustainable development of the countries’ relations.
He hailed the importance of the joint vision statement on defence cooperation until 2025 between the two defence ministries, which was signed between the ministers in the presence of Chinese Party General Secretary Xi Jinping and Vietnamese Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, who is currently on an official visit to China.
The signing illustrates the proactive and active progress in defence ties, helping to beef up relations between the two countries and armies while defeating plots or distortions that aim to drive a wedge into bilateral ties, he stressed.
The two sides fully implemented cooperation activities set for 2016 such as the sixth defence strategy dialogue, the navies’ 21st joint patrol in the Tonkin Gulf, and young officers’ exchanges.
Minister Lich went on to say that 2017 is an important year for both Vietnam and China with the ongoing official visit to China by General Secretary Trong and a scheduled visit to Vietnam by Party General Secretary and President of China Xi on the occasion of the APEC Summit 2017.
Those visits hold a significant political importance as they will provide a new momentum for bilateral connections, including in defence, he said, adding that a Vietnam visit by leaders of China’s Central Military Commission and Defence Ministry will be a demonstration and also a solid foundation for the countries’ defence relations to develop further and practically.
For his part, Minister Chang described their nations’ friendship, nurtured by late Presidents Mao Zedong and Ho Chi Minh, as a precious common asset. He believed that the ongoing official visit by General Secretary Trong will contribute to the two nations’ cooperation and amity.
He asked both sides to comply with the Vietnamese and Chinese senior leaders’ common perceptions as reflected in the joint vision statement on defence cooperation until 2025, thus bringing bilateral relations to a new height.
Also on January 13, Lich, who is also Vice Chairman of Vietnam’s Central Military Commission, had a meeting with Vice Chairman of China’s Central Military Commission Fan Changlong.
They discussed cooperation measures to build the two armies with political firmness which deserve to be the loyal and trustworthy force of their respective Parties, peoples and nations.
Echoing Lich’s viewpoint, Fan said the two countries and armies have made strides in their relations, adding that the mutual visits by Trong and Xi this year are major landmarks that will lift bilateral ties to the next level.