Vietnam, Japan Enhance Cooperation in Economy

A delegation of Japanese economic organisations are in Vietnam to attend the Vietnam-Japan high-level economic conference.

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PM Pham Minh Chinh addresses the high-level economic seminar in Hanoi on March 7. Photo: VNA
PM Pham Minh Chinh addresses the high-level economic seminar in Hanoi on March 7. Photo: VNA

A high-level economic seminar between Vietnam and Japan was held in Hanoi on March 7 to explore new possibilities for bilateral relations towards the future, VNA reported.

The event was held by the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the Japanese Embassy in Vietnam, the Japan Business Federation, and the organising committee for celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the countries’ diplomatic relationship (September 21).

In his remarks, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh said 50 years after the establishment of bilateral diplomatic ties, the Vietnam – Japan friendship and cooperation have been unceasingly reinforced and developing in various fields

Particularly, economic, trade, and investment partnerships have continually received special attention and been promoted comprehensively. Both sides have built many important legal frameworks for bilateral ties and are currently members of new-generation free trade agreements such as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).

These are important corridors for fostering bilateral trade and investment links in the mutually beneficial and supporting spirit, he noted.

PM Pham Minh Chinh (front, ninth from right) and other participants in the high-level economic seminar in Hanoi on March 7. Photo: VNA
PM Pham Minh Chinh (front, ninth from right) and other participants in the high-level economic seminar in Hanoi on March 7. Photo: VNA

Japan has become the biggest ODA provider for Vietnam with more than JPY 2.7 trillion (USD 19.8 billion) in loans, nearly JPY 100 billion in non-refundable aid, and JPY 180 billion for technical cooperation, substantially contributing to large-scale infrastructure projects, creating momentum for sustainable socio-economic development, and helping with the transfer of advanced technology and human resources training in Vietnam.

It currently has more than 5,000 valid investment projects worth nearly USD 70 billion in total, ranking third among the 141 countries and territories investing in Vietnam. Meanwhile, the Southeast Asian country is investing in 104 projects worth USD 19.2 million in Japan, which stands at the 36th position among the 79 destinations of Vietnamese investment.

Bilateral trade approximated USD 50 billion in 2022, turning Japan into the fourth largest trading partner of Vietnam, which exported nearly USD 25 billion worth of goods to the Northeast Asian nation.

According to the latest survey by the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), up to 60% of Japanese enterprises plans to expand their business in Vietnam.

Besides, the Vietnam – Japan Joint Initiative, a special cooperation mechanism between the two Governments, has been carried out in eight phases over 20 years, generating numerous encouraging results in improving Vietnam’s investment climate and competitiveness.

Vietnam highly values the determination, seriousness, and effectiveness of Japanese investors and also understands their sincerity, trust, and commitment, PM Chinh said, appreciating the Japanese Government and enterprises’ contributions to Vietnam’s development achievements.

He held that the countries’ cooperation potential remains diverse and huge, calling on FDI businesses, including Japanese ones, to increase training high-quality human resources, apply advanced management science, and step up research, development, and innovation, thereby turning Vietnam into a centre in regional and global value chains.

The Vietnamese Government will always stand side by side with and create the best possible conditions for Japanese investors to make successful, sustainable, and long-term investment in the country, he emphasised, considering their success as Vietnam’s.

The PM expressed his belief that as the traditional cooperation, comprehensive results, sincerity, and mutual trust, are brought into full play, bilateral relations will continue to be consolidated in a more substantive manner, heralding a new era for the ties for the sake of the two peoples and for peace, stability, cooperation, and development in the region and the world at large.

At the seminar, participants made term-end review of the 8th phase of the Vietnam – Japan Joint Initiative, looked back on cooperation over the last 50 years, and discussed the vision for the next five decades.

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh receives a visiting delegation of Japanese economic organisations. Photo: VNA
Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh receives a visiting delegation of Japanese economic organisations. Photo: VNA

The same day, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh received the visiting delegation. Chinh took the occasion to praise the practical contributions of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), Japan Business Federation (Keidanren), and the Vietnam-Japan economic committee to the implementation of major infrastructure projects and those supported by Japan on training and capacity improvement for better business climate and competitiveness of Vietnam.

After five decades since the establishment of diplomatic ties, the countries’ relations are thriving across all fields with high mutual trust, the PM affirmed, adding that Japan remains a top economic partner of Vietnam.

He noted that Vietnam is making efforts to beef up production, business, and infrastructure investment, hence its big need for resources serving development.

While suggesting JICA and JBIC work closely with Vietnamese competent agencies to come up with more effective cooperation methods, Chinh encouraged Japanese firms to expand their investment in Vietnam’s infrastructure, energy, support industries, high quality farming, IT, smart urban development, finance-banking, and innovation, among other sectors.

He stated the Vietnamese Government is committed to accompanying the business community and facilitating their operations, bringing about mutual benefits and lifting the countries’ relations to a new height.

The Government leader proposed the Japanese side boost policy dialogue with Vietnam to share information and experience in completing law for business climate improvement; promote Vietnam’s potential for investment and partnerships to Japanese enterprises; and help the Southeast Asian nation develop its support industries and innovation, among others.

For their part, the Japanese delegates underscored their commitment to beefing up investment in Vietnam, particularly in infrastructure, environment and energy.

They lauded Vietnam’s commitment to the net zero goal and recommended the country join mechanisms within the G7 and G20 cooperation frameworks.

Hannah Nguyen