FM Bui Thanh Son receives EU Ambassador to Vietnam Julien Guerrier

WVR - On May 9, Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son received new Ambassador of the European Union (EU) Julien Guerrier on the occasion of his starting tenure in Vietnam.
FM Bui Thanh Son receives EU Ambassador to Vietnam Julien Guerrier
Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son and Ambassador of the European Union Julien Guerrier. (Photo: Quang Hoa)

During the meeting, Minister Son assessed the positive development of the Vietnam-EU relationship in recent times, expressing satisfaction with the effective implementation of the Vietnam – EU Framework Agreement on Comprehensive Partnership and Cooperation, as well as the Vietnam-EU Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).

He welcomed the new EU-Indo Pacific Strategy, prioritizing cooperation with Southeast Asian countries, including Vietnam, particularly in areas such as infrastructure development, climate change adaptation, sustainable development, etc.

The Foreign Minister proposed that the EU and its member states coordinate to assist Vietnam in effectively implementing the Resource Mobilization Plan (RMP), which was announced at COP28 to implement the Political Declaration on establishing the "Just Energy Transition Partnership" (JETP) between Vietnam and the International partner group, with the EU as the coordinator. Minister Son also expressed his hope that the EU Ambassador would urge the European Commission (EC) to promptly lift the "yellow card" for Vietnam's seafood exports and persuade the remaining 9 EU member states to promptly ratify the Vietnam-EU Investment Protection Agreement (EVIPA).

FM Bui Thanh Son receives EU Ambassador to Vietnam Julien Guerrier
Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son and Ambassador Julien Guerrier at their meeting. (Photo: Quang Hoa)

For his part, Ambassador Guerrier said that he had been working with Vietnam since 1996 when he participated in negotiations for Vietnam's accession to the WTO. He expressed delight at Vietnam's remarkable transformation upon returning to the country in his new role and congratulated Vietnam on its rapid and robust development. The Ambassador concurred with the Minister's assessment of the dynamic development of Vietnam-EU relations in recent times, noting Vietnam as the EU's leading trading partner in goods within ASEAN. Ambassador Guerrier affirmed Vietnam's importance as an EU partner in the region and as one of the few Asia-Pacific countries with a comprehensive cooperation relationship with the EU, with both sides having established full cooperation mechanisms.

The Ambassador of the European Union concurs with the assessment of Minister Bui Thanh Son regarding the EVFTA, stating that since its implementation in 2020, EVFTA has contributed to a 40% increase in Vietnam-EU trade turnover, helping to create additional jobs and sustainable growth for both sides. The Ambassador emphasizes that the EU wants to assist Vietnam in achieving its goal of becoming a developed country by 2045 and reaching net-zero emissions by 2050. Additionally, the EU and the Ambassador personally express strong support for the remaining EU countries to ratify EVIPA promptly and commit to completing the ratification process within their terms, thereby facilitating the finalization of the agreement.

FM Bui Thanh Son receives EU Ambassador to Vietnam Julien Guerrier
Overview of the meeting. (Photo: Quang Hoa)

Minister Bui Thanh Son and Ambassador Guerrier agree to promote cooperation in EU areas of strength and Vietnam's urgent needs, such as addressing climate change, with immediate EU support for Vietnam in implementing the RMP.

Ambassador Guerrier noted that both sides have maintained active coordination and Vietnam has made efforts to implement measures to combat IUU fishing. He welcomed the delegation of Deputy Ministers from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Vietnam to work with the EC to review the implementation of the EU's recommendations and address some remaining issues. The EU Ambassador also expressed his delight at the highest number of Vietnamese exchange students awarded Erasmus scholarships by the EU in 2023 and praised the results of bilateral cooperation in peacekeeping.

FM Bui Thanh Son receives EU Ambassador to Vietnam Julien Guerrier
A group photo. (Photo: Quang Hoa)

On this occasion, Minister Son and Ambassador Guerrier also discussed some regional and international issues of mutual concern. Regarding the situation in the East Sea, both sides agreed on the need to resolve disputes through peaceful means, based on international law, including UNCLOS 1982, to ensure security, safety, and freedom of navigation in the area.

Minister Bui Thanh Son proposed to Ambassador Guerrier to promote high-level EU leadership visits to Vietnam during his tenure, expressing confidence that with the efforts of both sides, the Vietnam-EU relationship will be further strengthened and developed to new heights. The Vietnamese Government, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and relevant ministries, departments, and localities will actively coordinate and support the Ambassador in successfully completing his mission in Vietnam, the Foreign Minister affirmed.

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