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November 27, 2007

EC to fund Vietnam $451 mln for socioeconomic development 

The European Commission (EC) will grant Vietnam 304 million euros (451.8 million U.S. dollars) for its socioeconomic, health and education development from 2007 to 2013, visiting EC's President Jose Manuel Barroso said while having talks with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on Monday.
During the talks, the two sides agreed to establish frequent dialogue mechanisms at the levels of prime minister and EC's president, and foreign minister and EC's official in charge of external affairs, Vietnam News Agency reported.
They also agreed to beef up the bilateral cooperation in the fields of economy, trade, investment, science and technology. They have targeted to increase the bilateral trade to 15 billion dollars in 2010 from estimated 12 billion dollars in 2007, and sign an agreement on scientific and technological cooperation in the coming time.
Besides, they discussed regional and international issues of common concern, and agreed to actively cooperate at international and multilateral forums.

Dung said Vietnam regards the EC as a leading partner in its diplomatic policy, and proposes the European Union to offer it more development assistance, soon recognize its market economy status, remove trade barriers to Vietnamese exports to the block, support the country in the field of food hygiene and safety, and grant it the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) in the 2009-2013 period.
Jose Manuel Barroso, arriving here Sunday for his three-day official trip to Vietnam, said the EC will offer the country technical support, helping it soon be recognized having market economy status and enjoy the GSP. The EC will not apply any more anti-dumping investigations to Vietnamese exports such as bicycles, fluoresce lamps and stainless steel bolts.
Jose Manuel Barroso is also scheduled to meet with General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee NongDuc Manh and Vietnamese Chairman of the National Assembly Nguyen Phu Trong.

Courtesy XINHUA

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