Wed, 4th Oct 2023 13:45 (GMT +7)

Vietnam, US establish Comprehensive Strategic Partnership

Sunday, 10/09/2023 | 22:17:03 [GMT +7] A  A

Vietnam and the U.S. announced the establishment of Comprehensive Strategic Partnership for peace, cooperation and sustainable development on Sunday.

U.S. President Joe Biden and Vietnam's Communist Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong hold a meeting at the Communist Party of Vietnam headquarters in Hanoi on September 10, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy

The decision to upgrade Vietnam-U.S. relations was stated in the announcement of the Central Party Commission for External Relations on Sunday, following a meeting between General Party Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong and President Joe Biden, who arrived in Hanoi Sunday afternoon for a two-day state visit.

According to the announcement, Party chief Trong warmly welcomed and appreciated President Biden's visit to Vietnam as the two countries celebrate the 10th anniversary of establishing Comprehensive Partnership, saying the visit has special meaning, as it is an opportunity for the leaders of the two countries to discuss bilateral relations and international issues for the benefit of the people, and contribute to peace, cooperation and sustainable development within the region and the world. Trong recalled fond memories of his exchange with Biden, then U.S. vice president, when he visited the U.S. in July 2015. He appreciated the recent dialogues exchanged between the two leaders and thanked Biden for sending a letter in June to invite him to visit the U.S. again in the near future.

The Vietnamese leader emphasized that Vietnam's consistent foreign policy focuses on independence, self-reliance, peace, friendship, cooperation and development, diversification and multilateralization of foreign relations; being proactive and active in comprehensive international integration. Vietnam is a friend, a trusted partner and an active and responsible member of the global community. Vietnam adheres to the "four nos" defense policy, which means no partaking in military alliances, no siding with one country to act against another, no foreign military bases in the Vietnamese territory or using Viet Nam as leverage to counteract other countries, and no using force or threatening to use force in international relations.

Regarding complex situations and international conflicts, Vietnam wants parties to hold dialogues and resolve them peacefully by respecting the basic principles of international law and the United Nations Charter, he said.

He said Vietnam highly appreciates the U.S.'s support for Vietnam and ASEAN's stance on matters related to the East Sea (South China Sea), adding that Vietnam requests the U.S. to continue its support and actively contribute to promoting peace, security, cooperation, ensuring freedom of navigation and overflight and the legitimate interests of countries in the East Sea, going against the use of force or threat of. It also asks the U.S. to avoid taking actions that contravene international law which further complicate the situations, resolve disputes by peaceful means, implement Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), and soon sign an effective Code of Conduct (COC) in line with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

Trong said during the meeting that Vietnam had cooperated with the United States to fight fascism during World War II. President Ho Chi Minh quoted part of the U.S. Declaration of Independence in the opening of Vietnam's Declaration of Independence, sending a letter to the U.S. Government requesting to establish full relations with the U.S. However, the relationship between the two countries then went through many ups and downs with a war. He said that "Vietnam is pleased to see that since the two countries normalized relations in 1995, especially after establishing the Comprehensive Partnership in 2013, the relationship has developed strongly, deeply, substantially and effectively."

General Party Secteraty Nguyen Phu Trong speaks to the press in Hanoi after his dialogue with U.S. President Joe Biden, September 10, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy

The announcement said that based on the important foundations of the past, and for the benefit of the two peoples and the desire to strengthen cooperation for the goals of peace, cooperation and sustainable development in the new context, Vietnam welcomes the two countries establishing relations at a new level, a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.

The two leaders agreed that past reality shows that the most important factors for the development of Vietnam – U.S. relations are full respect for basic principles that guide the two countries' relations, including respect for the United Nations Charter, international law and each other’s political institutions, independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity.

The Vietnamese Party leader emphasized that the understanding of each other's circumstances, respect for each other's legitimate interests and non-interference in each other's internal affairs are always important. He said the specific motto for the development of Vietnam-U.S. relations is "putting the past behind, overcoming differences, promoting similarities, looking towards the future." Vietnam highly appreciates the U.S.'s assertion that it supports Vietnam to be "strong, independent, self-reliant and prosperous."

He emphasized a number of major directions to promote Vietnam – U.S. relations. This includes continuing to strengthen mutual understanding, implementing guiding principles, creating long-term stability, conducting high-level meetings and cooperation between sectors and levels, and people-to-people exchanges. He welcomed the strong promotion of economic, trade and investment cooperation and inclusive economic growth in the direction of innovation. The two sides agreed to create a breakthrough in cooperation in science and technology.

President Biden expressed his joy to visit Vietnam and expressed thanks for the warm welcome. He emphasized that his visit has historical significance not only for the relationship between the two countries, but also for the Indo-Pacific region and the world, stating the United States' viewpoint on supporting an open, stable, secure, connected and prosperous region.

The U.S. leader emphasized the importance of Vietnam's role and position in the region, appreciating Vietnam's active role in many regional and global issues, including responding to climate change. The president affirmed his support for ASEAN's central role and his desire to cooperate with Vietnam to contribute to ASEAN's solidarity and prosperity. He emphasized that the South China Sea, which Vietnam calls the East Sea, has an important position in international prosperity and stability. He also stated the United States' appreciation to the goals of the Indo-Pacific Economic Cooperation Framework.

U.S. President Joe Biden speaks to the press in Hanoi after his dialogue with General Party Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, September 10, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy

Biden expressed his appreciation for Vietnam, the country's achievements in development, contributions to international work and the leadership role of Trong. He expressed his support for Vietnam's development, including economic and scientific-technological cooperation in the new period, the development of the electronics industry and response to climante change, and clean energy development. He said the two countries upgrading their relationship to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership brings benefits to both countries and common international interests.

Biden became the fifth U.S. president to visit Vietnam since the countries normalized relations.

Economic cooperation has been a focus in the two countries' relations.

Bilateral trade turnover reached over $123.86 billion in 2022, an 11% increase from 2021. The U.S. is Vietnam’s largest export market and its second-largest commercial partner. Vietnam is the seventh-largest commercial partner for the U.S.

Direct foreign investments from the U.S. to Vietnam reached over $11 billion, accounting for over 1,200 projects, placing it at 11th place among all countries and territories that invest directly into Vietnam.

The countries have also reinforced their collaborations in dealing with war legacies.

The U.S. made financial and technical contribution to complete dioxin cleanup at Da Nang Aiport and is working on clearance at Bien Hoa Airport. Vietnam and the U.S. have also worked to repatriate the remains of 733 U.S. soldiers missing in Vietnam during the war.

Source: VnExpress