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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs                    29  September 2011

Vietnam seeks Dutch climate change help

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Vietnam hoped the Dutch Government would offer more support to help the country cope with climate change and build sea defenses, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung told his Dutch counterpart, Mark Rutte, in The Hague yesterday.

Five prioritised aspects that the two sides put on the table were climate change, water management, oil and gas, seaports and logistics, and agriculture.

They particularly stressed the need to push the implementation of the Strategic Partnership Agreement on climate change adaptation and water management.

Dung told his host that Vietnam always attached importance to enhancing friendly relations and multi-faceted cooperation with the Netherlands, one of the country's most important partners within the EU.

He also said that Vietnam would continue its efforts in renewal and integration, and resolve to overcome existing hardships to realise its goal of becoming an industrialised nation by 2020. Rutte said the Dutch also wanted to expands ties with Vietnam, which he described as an emerging market with lots of potential.

In terms of investment and commerce, the Netherlands is Viet Nam's largest European investor and one of the country's leading trade partners among European nations.

Currently, the Netherlands has 153 projects operating in Vietnam with a total investment of US$5.6 billion.

Two-way trade revenue reached nearly $2 billion last year, and more than $1.76 billion in the first eight months of this year.

The two sides are joining hands to carry out programmes as part of the Strategic Partnership Agreement, but Viet Nam hoped to receive more assistance from the Netherlands in specific areas including measures to design and manage sea defenses.

The leaders also saw cooperation potential in agriculture, petroleum, sea ports and ship building.

Dung invited Rutte to visit Vietnam and the host accepted.



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It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

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