Timor-Leste PM’s visit to boost bilateral ties

Timor-Leste Prime Minister Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão will pay an official visit to Vietnam from September 3-5, which aims to affirm Timor-Leste’s desire to promote bilateral relations and multi-faceted cooperation with Vietnam .

Timor-Leste Prime Minister Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão (Source: timor-leste.gov.tl)

Timor-Leste Prime Minister Kay Rala Xanana Gusmão (Source: timor-leste.gov.tl)

The visit, made at the invitation of his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Tan Dung, will be the second one by Gusmao. He first visited Vietnam in 2005 as President of the Timor-Leste.

Vietnam and Timor-Leste established their diplomatic ties on July 28, 2002, however, the two countries’ relations began in 1975 when the Fretilin (Revolutionary Front for an Independent Timor Leste) unilaterally declared independence. Vietnam was one of the first countries to recognise Timor-Leste’s independence.

The two sides have exchanged a number of high-ranking delegations, including Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Manh Cam’s visit to Timor-Leste to attend the country’s independence announcement ceremony in 2002 and Timor-Leste President Xanana Gusmão’s official visit in August 2005.

President Jose Ramos Horta made a State-level visit to Vietnam in April 2010, during which the two sides signed the Framework Agreement on Economic and Technical Cooperation and establish the bilateral Joint Committee mechanism.

Timor-Leste opened its embassy in Hanoi in April 2012 and assigned a resident ambassador to Vietnam in November that year.

In 2012, two-way trade reached 34.4 million USD, with Vietnam mainly exporting rice and seafood to Timor-Leste.

There is much room for both countries to cooperate in agriculture, oil and gas, seafood and infrastructure construction.

Vietnam’s military-run Viettel Group is carrying out a telecommunication project valuing at 15 million USD in Timor-Leste.

Vietnam and Timor-Leste are negotiating for a trade agreement, an agreement on investment encouragement and reciprocal protection, and memoranda of understanding on health care and agriculture cooperation.

During the Timor Leste PM’s visit, the two countries will also exchange experience in national development as well as discuss international and regional issues of mutual concern.-VNA