Vietnam and the European Commission (EC) have entered into an agreement in which the EC will give an aid of €400 million (US$507.4 million) to the Southeast Asian country in the 2014-2020 period.
The agreement was signed on Monday following talks between EC President Manuel Barroso and visiting Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, the Vietnam News Agency reported.
During the meeting, PM Dung put emphasis on the need to finalize the framework Vietnam – European Union (EU) Partnership and Cooperation Agreement. He also suggested the EU recognize Vietnam as a market economy soon.
The Vietnamese government leader affirmed that Vietnam, as a coordinator of the ASEAN-EU relations, supports the formation of the ASEAN – EU strategic partnership as well as the EU’s involvement in regional issues in which the ASEAN plays a key role.
For his part, EC President Barroso told his guest that the EC and EU support the ASEAN’s central role in the evolving regional security structure and help promote cooperation between Vietnam and the EU.
He and PM Dung pledged to boost Vietnam-EU cooperation in health care, education, personnel training, environment and climate change, and to facilitate exchanges at all levels.
Barroso highlighted the need to ensure security, safety, maritime and aviation freedom in the East Sea, and reiterated that the EU supports the peaceful settlement of disputes in line with international laws, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC).
The host and guest also reached a statement detailing their orientations to conclude negotiations on the EU-Vietnam free trade agreement.
After their talks, PM Dung and EC President witnessed the signing of an aid deal worth €400 million for Vietnam from now until 2020.