Deputy PM Huệ had a working session with Belgian Deputy PM and Minister for Employment, Economy and Consumer Affairs Kris Peeters, and met with Senate President Christine Defraigne, and Minister-President of Flanders Geert Bourgeois on Tuesday as part of his visit to the European nation.

The two sides agreed to promptly roll out plans on trade, investment and cultural promotion in each country to mark the 45th anniversary of diplomatic ties between Việt Nam and Belgium (1973-2018).

They also agreed to maintain high-level meetings and the exchange of all-level delegations, while continuing to closely coordinate and support each other at multilateral forums.

They held that economy is the main pillar of bilateral co-operation, and consented to take more active measures to facilitate exports and encourage Belgian businesses to invest in Việt Nam in areas such as maritime transportation, logistics, green technologies, agriculture, renewable energy and health care which are of their priorities and strengths.

Deputy PM Huệ lauded relations between Việt Nam and all-level authorities of Belgian regions and localities, saying they have brought about pragmatic outcomes in research, education-training, French language teaching, health care, technical support, environmental protection and cultural exchanges.

Deputy PM Peeters and Senate President Defraigne shared Deputy PM Huệ’s views about the importance of the EU-Việt Nam Free Trade Agreement in promoting economic links between EU members, including Belgium, and Việt Nam.

The two sides, therefore, agreed to collaborate in accelerating the signing and ratification of the deal.

Deputy PM Huệ suggested the Flanders region expand its co-operation programmes in Vietnamese localities.

Minister-President Bourgeois said that Flanders enterprises always place importance on the Vietnamese market and will step up their trade and investment activities in the country, as well as other nations in ASEAN and Asia-Pacific through Việt Nam.

The two sides will advance the relations, especially via scholarship programmes, joint research studies between their universities and research institutes, expand collaboration in the realms of Flanders’ strengths and Việt Nam’s interests like research in new materials, sustainable aquaculture, IT and medical products, and increase the operational efficiency of the Flanders Investment and Trade (FIT) in Việt Nam.

Also on Tuesday, Deputy PM Huệ had a meeting with European Commissioner for Maritime Affairs, Fisheries and Environment Karmenu Vella, during which he called on the EU to continue its support for Việt Nam in building policies on water resources management, environmental protection planning, forest administration and forestry product trading.

Vella promised that the EU will increase its support for Việt Nam in maritime environmental management and sustainable exploitation of maritime resources.

Regarding illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, Deputy PM Huệ affirmed that Việt Nam has implemented many inclusive solutions to tackle the issue.

They agreed to maintain dialogue channels to effectively handle the problem.

The EU pledged to assist Việt Nam in joining relevant international conventions.

The same day, Deputy PM Huệ left Brussels for Bratislava, beginning his working visit to Slovakia.

Viet Nam News - September 20, 2017