Deepening Vietnam-Thailand strategic partnership

Thursday, 2015-07-23 11:19:59
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Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Thai counterpart Prayut Chan-o-cha
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NDO/VNA - At the invitation of the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand Prayut Chan-o-cha and to implement the agreements between the two governments, Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his spouse today start their visit to Thailand. During the visit, the two Prime Ministers will co-chair the third Vietnam-Thailand Joint Cabinet meeting to foster the two countries’ strategic partnership.

The official visit takes place as Thailand has been experiencing slow growth due to recent negative developments in the global economy and the domestic political crisis - however, their economy is showing signs of recovery. The Thai economy is expected to grow by 3.5% to 4.5% this year compared to just 0.7% in 2014. Thailand is actively joining regional and sub-regional cooperation activities, and fostering its external relations with neighbouring countries and other major countries.

Vietnam and Thailand have been neighbours in the region, with similar cultures and long-time friendship. The two countries established diplomatic relations in 1976, and have seen major developments since the 1978 visit to Thailand by Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Van Dong. Since Vietnam’s joining of ASEAN in 1996, the two have shared this mutual interest. The two countries have regularly exchanged high level delegations, and conducted the first Vietnam-Thailand Joint Cabinet meeting in 2004, which defined major directions for bilateral and multifaceted co-operation. On the occasion of Party leader Nguyen Phu Trong’s visit to Thailand in 2013, the two countries’ leaders lifted their relationship to a strategic partnership - an important historical milestone in the bilateral relations, further deepening their cooperation.

The two countries signed an action plan during Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s visit to Vietnam in 2014 to implement the Vietnam-Thailand Strategic Partnership during the 2014-2018 period, covering all areas of cooperation. Besides political relations, the two countries also expanded their scope of co-operation. Bilateral trade revenue increased to US$10.6 billion in 2014, 12.5% higher than 2013, and 23.2% higher than 2012. Thailand is currently the tenth largest investor in Vietnam, with 392 projects with accumulated registered capital of US$6.8 billion. Vietnam has seven investment projects in Thailand with US$11.35 million in capital. Co-operation in defence, security, education, training, tourism, sports, transport, agriculture and other fields have all seen positive developments. Vietnam and Thailand have been co-operating in regional and international forums, especially within ASEAN and the UN. The two countries have both had positive roles within ASEAN and are determined to implement the Roadmap to ASEAN Community in 2015.

During this visit, the two countries are expected to discuss and agree on major solutions and orientations for bilateral cooperation, especially in politics, security, defence, trade, economics, investment, labour, and cooperation within the region and sub-region. The visit will depend the bilateral relations, making them more effective and practical, to serve the desire of the two peoples for peace, security, cooperation and development in the region and the world.