VN-Myanmar relations have been close, faithful and increasingly strong, DPM Minh says
16:02 | 28/05/2020
VGP - The Viet Nam-Myanmar relationship has always been close, faithful and increasingly strong, profound, and substantive, Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh wrote in his latest article on occasion of the 45th anniversary of the two countries' diplomatic ties.

President Ho Chi Minh visits Myanmar in February 1958

     >>> Infographics: Viet Nam-Myanmar comprehensive cooperative partnership

The year 2020 marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between Viet Nam and Myanmar. This is the significant turning point of our bilateral ties, providing an opportunity for the sides to review the glorious history of the relationship and to move forward together.

Though Viet Nam and Myanmar officially set up diplomatic relations in 1975, the exchanges between the two nations dated back far earlier as both countries had had robust trade ties. Right after gaining independence, our outstanding leaders, President Ho Chi Minh and General Aung San, were interested in establishing and cultivating friendly relations between the two nations. Viet Nam first opened a laison office in Yangoon in early 1947 and for many years Myanmar played as one of Viet Nam’s important gateways to the world. President U Nu visted Viet Nam in 1954 and President Ho Chi Minh paid a visit to Myanmar in 1958, laying a solid foundation for the bilateral ties.

Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong (left) meets with President Htin Kyaw during the later's visit to Myanmar in August 2017

More than four decades have gone by with many historical ups and downs, the relationship between Viet Nam and Myanmar has always been close, faithful and increasingly strong, profound, and substantive. One of the milestones is the establishment of the Comprehensive Cooperative Partnership in 2017. Today, Viet Nam and Myanmar are equal, trustful, and mutually respectful partners, working together towards the common aspiration of becoming a developed and prosperous countries coexisting in the region and the world of peace, security, cooperation and development, as well as sincere friends whose share sorrow and mirth, thoroughly understand each other and stand side by each.

The political trust between the two countries has become increasingly tightened through the exchange of delegations at all levels and effective operation of the existing bilateral cooperation mechanisms. As the two countries have embarked on reform processes and deployed open foreign policies in recent years, the exchange of delegations at all levels has become more frequently, especially the Myanmar visits by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong [now Party General Secretary and State President of Viet Nam] in August 2017, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in December 2019, National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan in August 2016, and the Viet Nam visits by State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi in April 2018 and Presdient U Win Myint in May 2019. Local-to-local cooperation mechanisms have also been working fruitfully.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc meets with Myanmar President Win Myint as part of his visit to Myanmar in December 2019

Economic, trade and investment cooperation is a bright spot in the Viet Nam-Myanmar ties. Viet Nam is the 10th biggest trade partner of Myanmar with the two-way trade volume soaring to US$1.05 billion in 2019 from US$152 million in 2020, surpassing the two countries’ trade goal of US$1 billion in 2020. Despite impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the trade exchanges reached US$250.2 million in the first quarter this year, up 10.7% compared to the same period last year. Currently, more than 220 trade reprentatives are working in various sectors in Myanmar. Viet Nam continnues maintaining its position as the 7th biggest foreign investor in Myanmar with 18 projects caplitalized at nearly US$2.2 billion.

Positive progresses have also been seeen in other cooperative areas like security, defense, agriculture, telecommunication, energy, tourism, education and culture, etc. The direct air route, which were launched in 2010, has contributed to further facilitating exchanges of trade, culture, sports and tourism and moving the two nations increasingly closer. As the two countries are working to harness development opportunities, both sides will have more room for substantive and diverse cooperation.

Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and Myanmar's Minister of International Cooperation U Kyaw Tin sign the Minute of the 9th session of the Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation in Ha Noi on March 12, 2019.

Viet Nam and Myanmar have also coordinated closely at a number of international forums, especially ASEAN and the United Nations, etc. The two countries share various similar interests and common visions over regional and international issues, including those that are vital to each country, such as maintenance of indepdenence, self-reliance and international integration, and make practical contributions to the common efforts for peace, stability, cooperation and development of the region and the world.

Given the political trust, consensus and joint efforts from the leaders and people of the two countries along with mutually beneficial potentials and strengths, the relationship between Viet Nam and Myanmar would continue to flourish in the time to come, bringing about practical benefits to the two countries, contributing to solidarity, unity and development of the ASEAN Community as well as to peace, prosperity and cooperation in the region and the world. From such perspective, the bilateral ties would continue to be increasingly closer and generate greater achievements./.

By Huong Giang

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