Khin Aung Myint, President of the Myanmar Parliament and Speaker of its Upper House, will pay an official visit to Vietnam from June 20-24.
The visit was made at the invitation of Nguyen Sinh Hung, Chairman of the Vietnam National Assembly, according to a communiqué released by the NA Committee for External Affairs on June 16.
Although corruption and waste have been gradually controlled, they remain serious at certain levels in various areas.
Corruption remains serious: Deputy PM Phuc
At a National Assembly Q&A session on June 15, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said corruption in the management and use of land and natural resources, capital construction investment, state budget management, tax and fee collection, management and use of capital and asset in State-owned enterprises, bank credit, personnel work, and relations between state-run agencies and people and businesses, is a major concern in society and a great challenge for the Party leadership and State management.
Deputy PM Phuc affirmed that the government will coordinate efforts between inspection, auditing, investigation, procuracy and judgement agencies to combat and prevent corruption and waste, with a higher sense of responsibility at all levels.
Mr Phuc proposed that the NA, the Vietnam Fatherland Front and its local chapters and people nationwide take the initiative to supervise the operational efficiency of state-run agencies and managers in order to prevent, detect and deal with violations in time.
The government will submit a draft of the amended Anti-corruption Law to the NA for approval soon, he added.
In response to question about complaints and denunciations, Deputy PM Phuc said the Party and State always pay due attention to settling urgent issues to ensure the law enforcement and exercise of people’s legal rights.
He said the government will mobilize socio-political and mass organizations to get directly involved in the process of combating and preventing corruption and waste.
Vietnam seeks further UNESCO assistance
Deputy PM Nguyen Thien Nhan addresses a meeting marking 35 years of the National Commission for UNESCO
Vietnam hopes to receive further UNESCO support, especially in the areas of education, and preservation and restoration of heritage sites, says Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Thien Nhan.
Nhan made the request while receiving Eric Falt, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for External Relations and Public Information, in Hanoi on June 15.
He thanked the UN organisation for its practical contribution to implementing UNESCO-funded programs in Vietnam, including those on education for all, education for sustainable development, and finalisation of policies on protection of cultural and natural heritage sites.
Falt acknowledged the Vietnam National Commission for UNESCO for its efforts to seek and maintain the country’s distinctive cultural, education and scientific values, helping to enrich the global cultural heritage system.
Eric Falt is in Hanoi for ceremonies to mark the 35th anniversary of the Vietnam National Commission for UNESCO and grant UNESCO’s World Cultural Heritage Certificate to Thanh Hoa province’s Ho Dynasty Citadel.
He is scheduled to attend a consultative meeting of UNESCO National Committees in the Asia-Pacific region.
Vietnam has 7 world cultural and natural heritages, 6 world intangible cultural heritages, 8 world biosphere reserves, 3 global documentary heritages, and 1 global geo-park.
Former Indonesian ambassador to Vietnam honoured
Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh has granted the Friendship Order to Indonesia’s ambassador to Vietnam from 2008-2011 Pitono Purnomo for his contributions to promoting bilateral traditional friendship and comprehensive cooperation between the two countries.
Speaking at the June 14 ceremony, FM Minh expressed his delight at the fine development of Vietnam-Indonesia relations, especially after President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s visit to Vietnam in 2010 and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s visit to Indonesia in 2011.
He proposed that the two foreign ministries closely coordinate in speeding up the implementation of the 2012-2015 Action Plan and exchanging high-ranking delegations.
Purnomo thanked Vietnamese ministries, agencies, social political organizations, and friends for their cooperation during his term of office in Vietnam and said he will continue sparing no effort to help tighten Indonesia-Vietnam ties.
Pitono Purnomo is paying a working visit to Vietnam as head of the Policy Analysis and Development Agency of Indonesia’s Foreign Ministry in the framework of cooperation agreement signed between the two Foreign Ministries.
Vietnam, Morocco sign investment pact
Vietnam and Morocco signed an agreement on investment promotion and protection in capital Rabat on June 15.
Addressing the signing ceremony, Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son affirmed Vietnam’s determination to strengthen cooperative relations with Morocco and engage in this country’s development efforts.
Vietnam wants to explore the Moroccan market to boost its investment in the North African country, said Son.
Moroccan Minister of Finance and Economy Nizar Baraka said the signed agreement will help increase two-way trade and investment.
The Moroccan government, through the agreement, wants to diversify its market to further attract foreign investment, especially when the Vietnamese economy has achieved steady growth in recent years, said Baraka.
In addition, he said the agreement will help open up new opportunities for the two countries’ business communities to further engage in each other’s markets, so as to boost bilateral trade.
The same day, Son met with Moroccan Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation Saad Dine El Otmani, to discuss measures to strengthen bilateral cooperation, especially in economics.
Vietnam and Morocco established diplomatic ties in 1961 and opened their embassies in their capitals in 2006.
The two countries have signed a number of agreements, including those on trade, economic, cultural, scientific and technological cooperation, visa exemptions for diplomatic and official passport holders, and double tax avoidance.
However, two-way trade remains modest, fetching US$6 million in 2003 and amounting to US$31 million in 2009. Vietnam mainly exports coffee, pepper, seafood, garments, electronic appliances and rubber tyres to Morocco, and imports scrap steel, animal feed, plastic materials, and construction stone.
ASEAN, RoK strengthen strategic partnership
The 16th ASEAN-Republic of Korea (RoK) Dialogue, a senior officials’ meeting, was convened in Seoul on June 15 to discuss ways and means to further strengthen strategic partnership between the two sides.
A press release of the ASEAN Secretariat said the two sides reviewed progress made in the implementation of the Joint Declaration on ASEAN-RoK Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity and the Plan of Action to implement the joint declaration.
Both expressed their satisfaction with the significant progress that has been achieved in ASEAN-RoK multi-faceted cooperation, an example of which was the signing of the Agreement on Forest Cooperation between ASEAN and the RoK in Bali, Indonesia, on November 2011.
In addition, the two sides exchanged views on the future direction of ASEAN-RoK relations and underscored the need to continue to tap the vast potential and opportunity that exist in the relations to build a strong partnership that could contribute to the peace and prosperity in the region.
The RoK reiterated its strong commitments to supporting ASEAN’s efforts to narrow the development gap in the region, particularly in the Mekong region under the Mekong-RoK framework.