Newly elected Deputy PM unveils diplomatic tasks

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Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh has said Vietnam will continue carrying out its open foreign policy of befriending all nations alongside firmly defending national sovereignty.

Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh

Minh, who is also incumbent Foreign Minister, told the press on the sidelines of the current National Assembly on November 13 that Vietnam has established 14 strategic and/or comprehensive partnerships with countries since 2001, elevating its position in the world.

In Southeast Asia alone, it has developed special ties with Laos, comprehensive cooperation relations with Cambodia, and strategic partnerships with Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand.

It is the only country in Southeast Asia that has entered into the strategic partnership with several members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Vietnam has also set up strategic partnerships with not only world powers but also influential countries in the Americas, Africa and other continents.

Vietnam has been implementing its foreign policy effectively over the years, and foreign affairs will be promoted in the coming time to support the country’s international integration and national development, Minh said.

He also confirmed defending national sovereignty is part and parcel of Vietnam’s foreign policy, and Vietnam enjoys sovereignty and sovereign rights in the East Sea in line with the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Vietnam and other ASEAN countries are implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), and they are now working with China to formulate a Code of Conduct (COC) in the sea.

These are measures that help Vietnam defend its sovereignty and sovereign rights in the East Sea, Minh said.

According to the Deputy Prime Minister-cum-Foreign Minister, Vietnam and other ASEAN members worked on COC contents when it was the coordinator between ASEAN and China between 2009 and 2012.

ASEAN and China have begun first consultations on the COC, but they have a long way to go before the document is signed and the process requires joint efforts from both sides, he said.

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