SA, Vietnam strengthen relations

8 October 2010

Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe reiterated South Africa’s commitment to strengthening cooperation with Vietnam as he ended a two-day visit to that country on Thursday.

In meetings with Vietnamese Vice-President Nguyen Thi Doan and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, Motlanthe emphasised there was vast potential to expand trade and investment between the two countries.

During the talks, both countries committed to increasing the volumes of trade to reach a target of US$1-billion over the next few years.

Motlanthe said there was a need to create awareness among South African and Vietnamese business communities regarding the business opportunities that existed in both countries.

The leaders also signed an agreement in the field of tourism and a memorandum of understanding in the field of water resources.

Motlanthe expressed his appreciation for Vietnam’s support for South Africa’s bid to be elected as a non-permanent Member of the United Nations Security Council for the period 2011/12.

“We have noted that Vietnam is bidding for this position for the period 2020-2021, for which elections are to be held in 2019, and that Vietnam has requested South Africa’s support. We are considering this.”

South Africa will also explore ways of cooperating with Vietnam to fight illegal trade in rhino horn, Motlanthe said.

“We have already submitted a request that a technical delegation from South Africa be received in Vietnam later in October 2010 to discuss the issue. The objective of the visit is cooperation, and the Vietnamese counterparts would be invited to pay a reciprocal visit to South Africa to share experiences.”

Vietnam is a developing market economy, and the country continues to achieve rapid growth in agriculture and industrial production, construction and housing.

A second meeting of the two countries will be held in South Africa in the course of next year.

Source: BuaNews