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Jul 13, 2021 / 16:36

Australia-Vietnam Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy set to sign in 2021

Bilateral trade turnover saw an impressive 40% growth in the first five months of 2021.

Vietnam and Australia express strong commitment to signing the bilateral Enhanced Economic Engagement Strategy in 2021, with the goal of ensuring sustainable recovery in the post-pandemic period and becoming one of the other's top 10 trading partners.

 Vietnam’s Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh and Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism, and Investment Dan Tehan. Photo: Hai Minh

The move was revealed in a meeting between Vietnam’s Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh and Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism, and Investment Dan Tehan today [July 13].

At the meeting, Minh expressed his thanks to the Australian government and people for providing aid of AUD40 million (US$30 million) and 1.5 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, expecting the two countries to continue close cooperation in this regard.

According to Minh, Vietnam-Australia's strategic partnership has been making strong progress in the past years, including an impressive 40% growth in two-way trade turnover in the first five months of 2021.

“This shows the strong linkage between the two economies and impacts from free trade agreements that both are part of, including the ASEAN-Australia-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement (AANZFTA), and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP),” said Minh.

Minh called for the Australian government to further open its market for Vietnamese agricultural and seafood products; encourage Australian firms to invest in Vietnam; support Vietnam in infrastructure, agricultural development, poverty reduction, tackling climate change, and training high-quality human resources.

Minh expected the two countries to continue cooperating in multilateral forums, including the United Nations, ASEAN, and Greater Mekong Sub-region.

On his part, Dan Tehan stated Australia’s support of 1.5 million vaccine doses for Vietnam is proof of strong bilateral relations and hoped the two would continue to stay by side in the Covid-19 fight.

The two senior officials also affirmed the significance of maintaining peace, stability, security, and freedom of navigation at sea, while stressing the necessity to resolve territorial disputes via international law, including the 1982 UN Convention for the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Tehan’s visit to Vietnam is part of a two-week trip to Singapore, Vietnam, Japan, South Korea, and the US to enhance economic cooperation between Australia and those countries.