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Vietnamese leader hold phone talks with Japanese counterpart

Vietnam Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc. Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

HANOI, Oct 13, 2020, VNS. Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc on Monday congratulated his Japanese counterpart Yoshihide Suga on his election victory, Vietnam News reported.

In his phone discussion with Prime Minister Suga, he affirmed Việt Nam always considered Japan to be a strategic, top and long-term partner, and wishes to continue actively promoting bilateral cooperation.

He said the two countries will collaborate on regional and international issues of mutual interest, for the benefit of the people, contributing to peace, stability, cooperation and development of the region and the world.

The PM expressed his thanks for Japan’s valuable support in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic in the past. He also hoped the two countries continue to cooperate and support each other in the future.

Japanese PM Suga expressed his delight at the strong development of Việt Nam – Japan relations, and thanked Việt Nam for its active cooperation in the fight against COVID-19.

Suga said he treasured the friendship with Việt Nam and hopes to lift the Việt Nam-Japan strategic partnership to a new level. He appreciated Việt Nam’s role and position in the region and the world and he would work closely with Việt Nam for the success of the upcoming ASEAN Summit.

He also expressed his sympathy with the people of Central Việt Nam about the damage caused by the floods.

PM Phúc invited the Japanese PM to visit Việt Nam at a suitable time and the offer was accepted “with pleasure.”

Earlier, Kyodo news agency reported that the Japanese Prime Minister is planning to visit Việt Nam and Indonesia around mid-October in his first official overseas trip since taking office last month.

If the trip goes ahead, he is expected to hold talks with Vietnamese Prime Minister Phúc and Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

Suga will make a final decision on whether to travel after examining the coronavirus situation at home and in the two Southeast Asian countries, the news agency said citing government sources.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said face-to-face exchanges between leaders play a key role in diplomacy.

He also reiterated that Japan seeks to promote the vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific, including the maintenance of the rule of law, freedom of navigation and overflight, and peaceful settlement of disputes, by building a stable relationship with its neighbours.

Việt Nam and Indonesia were also the first overseas destinations for former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe after he assumed the premiership for the second time in December 2012. Abe pursued closer economic and security ties and Suga is expected to follow suit after pledging to carry forward his predecessor’s policy legacy.

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