Top legislators of Vietnam, Côte d’Ivoire hold talks
Vietnamese National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue has expressed belief that the ongoing visit by President of Côte d’Ivoire’s National Assembly Adama Bictogo from June 13-16 will contribute to strengthening cooperation between the two countries and the two legislatures in particular.

Vietnamese National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue has expressed belief that the ongoing visit by President of Côte d’Ivoire’s National Assembly Adama Bictogo from June 13-16 will contribute to strengthening cooperation between the two countries and the two legislatures in particular.

This is the highest-level delegation and Bictogo is the first President of the Côte d’Ivoire NA to visit Vietnam in 48 years, Hue said during their talks in Hanoi on June 14 right after an official welcome ceremony held for the guest.

Vietnamese National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue (R) and President of Côte d’Ivoire’s National Assembly Adama Bictogo__Photo: VNA

Bictogo conveyed the regards of Côte d’Ivoire President Alassane Ouattara to Hue and other high-ranking leaders of Vietnam.

He said over the past decade, Côte d’Ivoire's GDP has been growing by over 7 percent annually. To reduce its poverty rate to 16 percent by 2030, the country is continuing with reform and opening its door for global integration.

According to the leader, Côte d’Ivoire has become one of the top 10 growing economies in Africa, with over 80 percent of its cashew nuts and 70 percent of cotton fiber exported to Vietnam. The country has also imported 40 percent of its rice and 45 percent of other goods such as machinery and motorcycles from Vietnam.

The guest proposed the two legislatures play a driving role in further leveraging advantages in various areas, including agriculture. Vietnamese businesses could set up cashew processing factories in Côte d’Ivoire, facilitate the training of Vietnamese experts to support Côte d’Ivoire in rice cultivation and mechanization of water rice cultivation. Meanwhile, Côte d’Ivoire could import mechanical products from Vietnam, he said.

Bictogo called for Vietnam’s assistance in vocational training for Côte d’Ivoire young people, particularly in information technology, mechanical engineering and electronics. He suggested both sides create favorable conditions for businesspeople and citizens to conveniently travel between the two countries through direct flights.

Agreeing with Bictogo’s proposals, Hue affirmed that Vietnam is ready to act as a bridge for Côte d’Ivoire’s goods to penetrate the ASEAN and Asian markets, work closely with the African country to enhance the import of cashew nuts, cotton and cocoa, particularly by developing value chain cooperation in cashew cultivation, processing and export. Efforts will be made to strengthen trade promotion and investment, and connections between associations and enterprises via visits and exchanges.

Côte d’Ivoire should expand the imports of products of Vietnam’s strength such as seafood, fertilizers, apparel, footwear, household appliances, construction materials, electronics and machinery, he said.

The Vietnamese and Côte d'Ivoire NA leaders sign a MoU on cooperation between the two legislatures__Photo: VNA

Vietnam is ready to offer all possible support for Côte d’Ivoire enterprises to do business in the country and vice versa, Hue said, adding that to achieve this, cooperation in the banking sector is needed.

He urged Côte d’Ivoire to promptly respond to the draft Memorandum of Understanding on economic and trade cooperation and designate responsible authorities for the bilateral trade agreement with Vietnam. He also asked for active negotiations toward the signing of cooperation documents, thus creating a legal framework for economic, trade and investment activities.

Both sides should continue discussing to explore cooperation opportunities, the Vietnamese leader said, adding that as agriculture is a priority area via South-South cooperation mechanism, they could coordinate to seek third-party support.

On this occasion, Hue thanked Côte d’Ivoire for creating favorable conditions for the Vietnamese community and recognizing the activities of the Vietnamese Association living there.

The host and guest agreed to establish legal frameworks that pave the way for new collaboration areas.

Hue proposed both sides facilitate exchanges between leaders, agencies and deputies of the two parliaments to share professional experience; monitor the effective implementation of international conventions and agreements signed by the two governments; support and boost connectivity and coordination between enterprises, as well as provide all possible assistance for businesses and citizens to do business stably in each nation.

On regional and global issues of shared concern, he suggested Côte d’Ivoire support ASEAN and Vietnam's stance on ensuring security, safety and freedom of navigation and overflight in the East Sea, as well as settling disputes through peaceful means in line with international law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

Vietnam always attaches importance to cooperation with Africa, he said, suggesting both sides continue working closely together within the International Organization of La Francophonie (OIF) and other multilateral mechanisms such as the United Nations and the Non-Aligned Movement. The two legislatures should continue upholding close coordination mechanisms at multilateral forums such as the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the Parliamentary Assembly of La Francophonie (APF), Hue said.

The host took this occasion to invite the Côte d’Ivoire legislature to send a delegation to the ninth Global Conference of Young Parliamentarians which is hosted by the Vietnamese NA in Hanoi in September.

Bictogo also invited Hue to pay an official visit to Côte d’Ivoire soon and the invitation was accepted with pleasure.

Following the talks, the two leaders signed a MoU on cooperation between the two NAs and met the press to inform the outcomes of their talks.

At the press conference, Bictogo said for Côte d'Ivoire, Vietnam is an important partner and the "key" to enhancing its relations with ASEAN. Côte d'Ivoire is ready to serve as a bridge to help Vietnam strengthen its relations with the West African region in particular and Africa as a whole.

Both sides demonstrated their determination to make every effort to make the two NAs one of the models for cooperation between the Vietnamese legislature and African countries, thus making positive contributions to their friendly cooperation.

The same day, the Côte d'Ivoire delegation paid floral tribute to fallen combatants at the monument dedicated to heroic martyrs on Bac Son street of Hanoi and visited the Stilt House of Uncle Ho in the President Ho Chi Minh relic site.

In the evening, Hue is scheduled to host a banquet in honour of Bictogo and his entourage.-

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