Sri Lanka, Vietnam boost trade
US$ 100 m target set for two-way trade volume by
President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Vietnamese President Nguyen agreed to
encourage bilateral trade and set the target of US$ 100 million for
two-way trade volume by 2012.
President Rajapaksa who was on a State visit to the Socialist
Republic of Vietnam from October 22 to 24 also discussed a range of
matters of mutual interest which included trade and investment
promotion, agriculture, cultural cooperation, air services and defence
and transnational crime prevention with President Nguyen.
President Rajapaksa undertook the State visit at the invitation of
Vietnamese President Nguyen Minh Triet.
conclusion of the official talks between the two Presidents, a
number of agreements were signed between the two countries. They
between the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the
Socialist Republic of Vietnam on Protection and Promotion of
* Cooperation Agreement between the Sri Lankan Defence, Public
Security, Law and Order Ministry and Vietnamís Public Security
Ministry on Preventing and Combating Crimes;
* Work Plan for 2010-2011 on Agriculture Development Cooperation
between the Agricultural Development and Agrarian Services
Ministry and VietnamAgriculture and Rural Development Ministry.
* Agreement on the Work plan for 2010-2013 between the Fisheries
and Aquatic Resources Ministry and Vietnamís Agriculture and
RuralDevelopment Ministry on the field of Fisheries Cooperation;
* Memorandum of Understanding on Cultural Cooperation between
the Cultural Affairs and National Heritage Ministry and
Vietnamís Culture, Sport and Tourism Ministry.
The President was accompanied by Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama,
Export Development and International Trade Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris,
Enterprise Development and Investment Promotion Minister Anura
Priyadarshana Yapa, Western Province Governor Alavi Mowlana and senior
officials and a group of business personnel.
President Rajapaksa was accorded an official welcome at the
Presidential Palace in Hanoi on October 22. President Nguyen Minh Triet
held official discussions and hosted a State Banquet in his honour.
President Rajapaksa also met Secretary General Communist Party of
Vietnam Nong Duc Manh and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.
During his stay in Hanoi, President Rajapaksa placed a wreath at the
Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in honour of the leader of Vietnam.
The bilateral discussions were held in an atmosphere of friendship,
warmth and close understanding. The Heads of State noted the excellent
state of the relations between Vietnam and Sri Lanka. The Vietnamese
President congratulated President Rajapaksa on the defeat of the LTTE in
Sri Lanka and reaffirmed Vietnamís support for the sovereignty and
territorial integrity of Sri Lanka.
President Nguyen Minh Triet expressed support for President
Rajapaksaís efforts to build a peaceful and prosperous nation. In
response Presidentís request for assistance in clearing mined areas in
the Northern province, the Vietnamese side agreed to consider
cooperation with Sri Lanka in demining process. President Rajapaksa
thanked the President and the Government of Vietnam for their steadfast
support to combat the LTTE in Sri Lanka, and in this context, for
extending support to Sri Lanka at the UN Security Council and the Human
The two leaders also exchanged views on a number of regional and
multilateral issues of mutual concern and agreed to continue to work
together for the mutual benefit of the two countries based on the
principle of non interference.
President Rajapaksa congratulated Vietnam for her impressive economic
development recorded during the renovation process and expressed Sri
Lankaís felicitations for Vietnamís achievements in foreign affairs,
including its successful assumption of the role as a non permanent
member of the UN Security Council and its forthcoming ascend to the
Chairmanship of ASEAN in 2010.
The President of Vietnam felicitated President Rajapaksa for the
important contribution made by Sri Lanka as Chair of the South Asian
Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), Asia Cooperation Dialogue
(ACD) and G-15, and as a member of ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF).
The discussions covered a wide range of matters of mutual interest
which included trade and investment promotion, agriculture, cultural
cooperation, air services and defence and transnational crime
prevention. Both leaders agreed to encourage bilateral trade and set the
target of 100 million US$ for two-way trade volume by 2012.
The two leaders welcomed the successful conclusion of the Second
Session of the Joint Commission between the two countries which was held
in August 2009 in Sri Lanka.
The Joint Commission was recognized as an effective mechanism to
further enhance bilateral relations between the two countries in many
spheres of cooperation. The Vietnamese President nnounced his countryís
decision to reopen a resident Embassy in Colombo.
President Rajapaksa welcomed this announcement and expressed
confidence that a resident Vietnamese Mission in Colombo would help to
further strengthen the friendship between the two countries in
developing a comprehensive partnership with Vietnam. The President and
the delegation also visited Ho Chi Minh City, the main commercial centre
of Vietnam and were received by Chairman of the Peopleís Committee of Ho
Chi Minh City Le Hoang Quan.
President Rajapaksa inaugurated the Vietnam - Sri Lanka Business
Forum which was jointly organized by the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and
Industry and the Foreign Investment Agency of the Ministry of Planning
and Investments together with Foreign Ministry and the Board of
Investment of Sri Lanka in Ho Chi Minh City. The Business Forum was
attended by business leaders of the two countries together with
dignitaries of the two Governments.
The Forum acknowledged the increase of the trade volume between the
two countries. President Rajapaksa extended an invitation to Vietnamese
President Nguyen Minh Triet, to undertake a State visit to Sri Lanka in
a convenient time. President Nguyen Minh Triet accepted the invitation.
The specific dates for the visit would be discussed through diplomatic