Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visits Vietnam

VietNamNet Bridge – Chinese Premier Li Keqiang yesterday (Oct 13) began his three-day official visit to Viet Nam at the invitation of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.

Viet Nam, China leader, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, bilateral trade

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang. -- Photo: RIA Novosti

This is the first by a high-ranking Chinese leader since China's new leadership took office. China remains one of Viet Nam's leading trade partners since 2004.

The Chinese Premier held official talks with PM Dung yesterday and signing documents to promote co-operation, especially in economics and trade.

In 2012, two-way trade turnover between the two countries topped over US$41 billion and in the first eight months of this year, bilateral trade hit $31.8 billion.

As of the end of August 2013, China had 934 projects in Viet Nam with a total registered capital of $4.79 billion, ranking 13th in foreign investment.

At present, about 13,500 Vietnamese students are studying in China, while about 3,500 Chinese students are being trained in Viet Nam.

The issues of borders and territory are also a focus of attention of the two countries.

The Chinese leader is scheduled to meet with President Truong Tan Sang, National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung and pay a courtesy call to General Party Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong today.

China, Vietnam agree to deepen partnership

The Prime Ministers of Vietnam and China have reached common perception on measures to deepen the two countries' comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership in the new context.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang held talks in Hanoi on October 13, following a welcome ceremony for Li, who is here for an official visit from October 13-15.

PM Dung said the Chinese PM's visit will contribute to furthering the friendly and cooperative ties between the two Parties, countries and peoples.

Premier Li Keqiang said his visit aims to demonstrate the Chinese Party and Government's resolve to deepen the traditional friendship, expand mutually-beneficial cooperation with Vietnam .

He extended condolences from the Chinese Party, State and people to Vietnam over the death of General Vo Nguyen Giap, an outstanding military leader and a close friend of the Chinese people.

The two sides discussed in depth the relations between the two countries over the recent past.

They agreed on five measures in order to enhance the Vietnam-China comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership, first of all to enhance political trust between the two nations while maintaining regular visits and contact between leaders, ministries, departments and localities.

Secondly, the two nations will continue to promote mutually-beneficial cooperation in various domains, especially economics and trade towards lifting two-way trade to 60 billion USD by 2015. Measures will be taken to sustain trade balance, expand financial and monetary links and foster resilience to financial risks.

Working groups will be set up to promote infrastructure and monetary cooperation.

The two countries will deploy key transport connectivity projects, working for the early start of construction of highways linking Lang Son and Hanoi, Mong Cai and Ha Long, as well as the conduct of a study exploring the feasibility of Lao Cai – Hai Phong high-speed railway.

Thirdly, Vietnam and China will increase people-to-people exchange, thus strengthening social foundation for closer friendship, and co-host the second youth festival later this year.

Fourthly, the two countries will work together to build a shared borderline of peace, stability and prosperity.

Fifthly, the two countries will enhance their coordination at regional and global forums for peace, stability and prosperity in the world.

On maritime issues, both host and guest agreed to abide by common perceptions of the two countries' Party and State leaders, and seriously implement the agreement on basic principles guiding the settlement of Vietnam – China sea-related issues.

The two sides will make full use of the Government-level negotiation mechanism on territorial border as well as consultations and friendly negotiations to seek essential and long-term solutions acceptable to both sides to these issues. They will actively consider transitional solutions that have no impact on each side's stance, including researching and discussing development cooperation. In such spirit, the two sides agreed on the establishment of a working group on maritime cooperation in the framework of the governmental negotiation delegations on Vietnam-China border.

The two government leaders agreed to focus their instruction on existing negotiation mechanisms and consultations, accelerate the working pace of working groups on waters off the mouth of the Tonkin Gulf and on cooperation in less sensitive issues at sea.

Negotiations on demarcation in waters off the mouth of the Tonkin Gulf on the easy-first, difficult-later, and step-by-step principles while furthering cooperation for development in this sea area. Joint surveys in this sea area will also be launched in order to carry out the task of the working group on waters off the mouth of the Tonkin Gulf . Cooperative projects in less sensitive issues at sea as well as cooperation on maritime environment protection, marine scientific research, search and rescue at sea, disaster prevention and maritime transport connectivity will be accelerated.

The two sides agreed to exercise tight control of maritime disputes and not to make any move that can further complicate or extend disputes, making good use of the hotlines between the two Foreign Ministries and the two Agriculture Ministries to promptly and suitably deal with arising problems. At the same time, the two sides will continue to active discuss and seek effective measures to control disputes and maintain the overall good relations between Vietnam and China and peace, stability in the East Sea .

The two sides agreed to fully and effectively implement the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties (DOC) in the East Sea, enhance trust, promote cooperation and work together to maintain peace and stability in the East Sea in the spirit and principles of the DOC and strive for an early conclusion of the Code of Conduct (COC) in the East Sea on the basis of consensus.

Premier Li invited PM Dung to visit China. The Government leader accepted it with pleasure.

Following their talks, the two leaders witnessed the signing of a series of bilateral cooperation documents, including an agreement on the opening of trade promotion agencies in each other's countries, a joint project on researching sea and island environmental management in the Tonkin Gulf.

PM Dung and his Chinese counterpart later met with press on the outcomes of their talks.

Revised law eyes better environment for bidding

Regulations relating to contractor-investor relationships or relationships among contractors should be further clarified to ensure a more competitive bidding environment in Viet Nam, some members of the National Assembly Standing Committee suggested on Saturday.

During the weekend session, the committee discussed revisions to the law on bidding which will be on the agenda of National Assembly this month.

Members of the NA Standing Committee agreed that to avoid fraud and raise effectiveness in bidding, the revised bidding law needs to regulate the relationship among relevant parties, including those who make investment decisions, investors and contractors.

The draft of the revised law includes more detailed regulations governing legal and financial independence among involved parties as well as banned activities during bidding.

Moreover, the appointment of contractors in public projects would be only made in special cases. The draft also has specific regulations over criteria, schemes for investors and contractors during the appointment of contractors.

In bidding for medicine supplies, especially, lawmakers urged for the creation of a separate chapter in the draft because of the importance of its role.

At the morning session, the NA Standing Committee did not reach agreement over increasing the tax rate related to natural resources, although the move would be expected to add money to the State budget and push mining and refinery companies to invest in more efficient and sustainable technologies.

NA chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung agreed with the need for a higher natural resource tax rate but urged for a careful adjustment, while NA vice chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan noted that it could affect companies and the country's integration process including the negotiation for a Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.

Source: VNS

Viet Nam, China leader, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, bilateral trade