Vietnam, Sri Lanka envisage expanding friendly relations, cooperation

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) –The past half-century has witnessed progress in the special cooperation between Viet Nam and Sri Lanka in both breadth and depth, said professor Dang Nguyên Anh.

Professor Nguyên Anh, who is currently deputy president of the Viet Nam Academy of Social Sciences (VASS), spoke on Tuesday during an international video conference “50 years of Viet Nam-Sri Lanka relations: Achievements and Prospects”.

The conference, organized by the Institute for Indian and Southwest Asian Studies, in collaboration with the Embassy of Sri Lanka, Hanoi and the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute of International Relations and Strategic Studies aimed at assessing the relationship between the two countries, creating a new vision for the next stage and agreeing on measures to realize that vision.

Speaking at the conference, professor Anh said that the two sides needed to further expand their trade and investment activities, outline the specific value of the trade turnover and set a clear timeline.

At the same time, the two countries should boost their trade balance through Sri Lanka’s increased imports of commercial products in Viet Nam, encourage Sri Lanka’s enterprises, not only large ones but also small and medium ones, to invest in Viet Nam in the areas of infrastructure development, high technology and renewable energy.

The two sides should focus on transferring technology and the development of supporting industries, creating opportunities for Vietnamese and Sri Lankan enterprises to participate in global production and supply chains.

Multilateral diplomacy in the partnership would increasingly develop between the two countries.

At present, a host of challenges are seen in the Indo-Pacific region, including regional security, wildlife trade, drugs and transnational crimes. Cooperation will bring benefits to both countries, positively contribute to stability and peace in the region and in the world.

The event celebrating the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries is even more special in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this challenge has created an opportunity for the two countries to show mutual help in times of difficulty. The transformation of a bilateral relationship must certainly be the result of perseverance and determination, said Anh.

Jayanath Colombage, Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka, said Sri Lanka and Viet Nam needed to become “guides” for each other. The long-standing relationship between the two countries will contribute to highlighting the role of the two countries in the region as well as in the international arena.

Viet Nam has made an increasingly active contribution to the peace, security and prosperity of the region and the world through its relations with Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka will be a bridge for Viet Nam’s cooperation with important partners in the Indian Ocean. At the same time, the relationship between Sri Lanka and Viet Nam will also pave the way for Sri Lanka to connect with Southeast Asian countries, according to the secretary.

During the conference, participants discussed the future trade and investment cooperation plan between Viet Nam and Sri Lanka. (Source: VNS)

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