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[ASEAN-Korea Summit] Korea, Vietnam pledge cooperation on ASEAN, global issues

President Moon Jae-in held a summit with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in Seoul on Wednesday, and discussed ways to improve bilateral ties. 

After their meeting, three memorandums of understanding and a revised version of a treaty to prevent double taxation were signed by both sides.
Moon welcomed the rapid development of South Korea-Vietnam relations and called for further strengthening cooperation. 

According to Seoul’s presidential office, Moon requested the Vietnamese leader’s support for the expansion of investment and trade between the two countries in areas such as high-tech materials and parts, as well as financial services. 

President Moon Jae-in (right), Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (left) holds a summit in Seoul on Wednesday. (Yonhap)
President Moon Jae-in (right), Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (left) holds a summit in Seoul on Wednesday. (Yonhap)

South Korean companies are the largest investors in Vietnam -- which is the nation’s fourth-largest trade partner, behind only China, the US and Japan. In 2018, bilateral trade came to about $68.3 billion. 

Cheong Wa Dae also said Moon briefed the Vietnamese leader about his administration’s North Korea policies and asked for the country to continue to play a constructive role in Korean Peninsula issues. 

Next year Vietnam will serve as the chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and as a nonpermanent member of the UN Security Council. 

With Vietnam set to serve as a co-chair of South Korea-ASEAN and South Korea-Mekong cooperation next year, Moon also called for closer cooperation between the two countries, Cheong Wa Dae said. 

According to Seoul’s presidential office, the Vietnamese leader agreed with Moon’s suggestion to work closely in relation to Korean Peninsula, ASEAN and global issues, and promised his country’s active support and participation in matters related to Seoul’s New Southern Policy. 

After the summit, the two leaders attended the signing of the three MOUs and the revised treaty. 

One MOU was signed by Vietnam’s Finance Ministry and the Korea Development Bank, relating to the improvement of Vietnam Development Bank’s operations. 

The MOU signed by the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency and the Vietnam Trade Promotion Agency outlines measures to improve interagency cooperation and support for companies. 

The third MOU was signed by South Korea’s Ministry of Education and Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries, and Vietnam’s Transport Ministry. It seeks to increase cooperation in training sailors, and in other areas related to ships and maritime affairs. As part of the plans, South Korea will hand over a 3,640-ton training vessel currently used by the Korea Maritime and Ocean University. 

By Choi He-suk (