Senior leaders from China and Vietnam have met in Beijing to discuss bilateral issues, including disputes in the South China Sea.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has held talks with Vietnamese Premier Nguyen Xuan Phuc, saying their discussions on Monday have taken place under good conditions.
“Under the situation that the bilateral ties between the two countries are developing positively overall, both leaders have conducted close and friendly exchanges. This is good for promoting the friendly relationship between both sides, as well as benefiting both peoples with concrete interests. I’m willing to exchange views with you over bilateral ties and other issues of common concern.”
Groundwork for the meetings began last week in Laos, where the two Premiers met during the East Asian Summit.
Nguyen Xuan Phuc says he appreciates the reception he’s been given in Beijing.
“I’m glad to meet again with Chinese premier. We have met with each other in several occasions including the recent successful summit held in Vientiane. I’d like to express my appreciation to China’s grand and attentive reception.”
One of the main topics discussed was issues in the South China Sea.
Chinese vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin says both leaders have agreed that they don’t want disputes in the region to overshadow the relationship between the two countries.
“Both sides have agreed to resolve maritime disputes properly over consultation and dialogue in accordance with previously signed accord on resolving maritime issues, as well as international law including the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. The two countries will also further conduct maritime cooperation and take advantage of the negotiation mechanism between both governments.”
China and Vietnam signed a 6-point agreement on the basic principles guiding the settlement of maritime issues 5-years ago, which highlighted friendly negotiation in order to properly handle differences in a peaceful way.
Meantime, the two leaders have also pledged further cooperation on infrastructure construction, production capacity, finance, trade and investment, as well as cultural and people-to-people exchanges.
Nguyen’s current trip is his first official visit to China since taking office in July during the first session of his country’s 14th National Assembly.
It’s also the first high-level visit to China by Vietnamese leaders since the 12th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam held in January.
Before his trip to Beijing, Nguyen has attended the 13th China-ASEAN Expo and China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit held in south China’s city of Nanning.
He’s set to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Beijing later on Wednesday and then leave for Hong Kong.