Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh held talks with Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) Hiroshige Seko in Hanoi on September 14, discussing measures to foster bilateral cooperation in the fields of industry, trade and energy.
The talks was also a chance for the two ministries to review the implementation of cooperation programmes reached at the second meeting of the Vietnam-Japan Joint Committee on Industry, Trade and Energy held in Tokyo in June 2017.
Minister Anh lauded the first meeting of the joint working group on automobile and supporting industry in line with the joint statement of the two governments issued during Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to Japan in June.
The two ministers deliberated solutions to effectively implement development strategies for the automobile and supporting industries. Anh proposed a number of cooperation contents with Japan in the future to realise Vietnam’s national industrialization and modernization targets.
Anh suggested that the METI work closely with the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) to boost bilateral trade in an efficient manner, while building multilateral cooperation mechanisms involving ministries and sectors of both countries to deal with emerging issues hindering two-way trade.
The two ministers stressed the need to enhance mutual support and assistance in joining the process of regional and global economic integration.
Regarding energy cooperation, the two ministers shared common perspectives on the importance of Vietnam-Japan energy cooperation in the middle and long terms.
Anh spoke highly of Seko’s proposal at the second meeting of the Vietnam-Japan Joint Committee on Industry, Trade and Energy on building strategic energy collaboration between the two ministries to define cooperation priorities.
Anh suggested Japan increase investments in gas-fueled and renewable energy projects in Vietnam.
For his part, Seko agreed with Anh’s proposals, affirming that Japan is willing to work with Vietnam in the framework of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
On the occasion, the two ministers signed a letter of intent on cooperation in supporting Vietnam in a number of areas, including supporting and automobile industries, energy, food processing, and regional and global economic integration.
Statistics from the MoIT’s Asia-Africa Market Department show that in 2016, two-way trade reached US$29.6 billion, making Japan the fourth biggest trade partner and the third largest import-export market of Vietnam.
By early September 2017, trade between the two countries hit US$21.4 billion, up 12.3% year on year, with Vietnam’s export turnover reaching US$11 billion.
Vietnam mainly exported apparel, machines, equipment, seafood, footwear, computers and electronic products and components to Japan, while importing computers, electronic products and components, automobile spare parts, plastics and fabric.