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NEW UPDATES Asean Affairs  16 October 2014  

Deal with Cuba targets new highs in economic relations

HAVANA — The Viet Nam-Cuba Inter-Governmental Committee for Economic, Commercial, Scientific and Technological Co-operation convened its 32nd meeting in Havana, Cuba on Monday, seeking ways to raise bilateral economic ties on par with outstanding political relations.

Cuban Minister of Trade and Foreign Investment Rodrigo Malmierca Diaz noted that during Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung's visit to Cuba in March this year, the two countries had pledged to further their traditional friendship as well as cooperation in economics, trade and investment.

To realise this, both sides had signed a medium-term economic co-operation programme, identified specific targets and set co-operative orientations for the next five years towards diversifying economic and trade ties, he added.

Reviewing the implementation of agreements reached at previous meetings, Minister Malmierca said that bilateral trade is yet to match existing potential, although good progress has been made recently.

The Vietnamese and Cuban Governments, therefore, are determined to lift economic ties to a higher level and bring them in line with the fine political relations between both countries, he said.

Viet Nam is Cuba's second largest trade partner in Asia as also its leading rice supplier, the minister said, expressing his hopes for more Vietnamese investments in oil and gas, tourism, and industrial sectors.

At the meeting, Vietnamese Minister of Construction Trinh Dinh Dung reiterated the nation's consistent stance on supporting the Cuban people's revolutionary cause. He also highlighted Cuba's valuable support for Viet Nam's past struggles for national liberation as well as its ongoing development.

He said that Cuba's new economic policies and measures, especially its Foreign Investment Law and preferential investment policies for the Mariel Special Development Zone (ZEDM), would lay a firm foundation for attracting foreign investment and realising the island nation's socio-economic development goals.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

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.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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