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Vietnam, Japan announce visa exemptions as co-operation strengthens

Japanese PM Koizumi welcomes FM Nguyen Dy Nien in Tokyo

Vietnam will continue to improve its investment environment for foreign investors, particularly those from Japan, said Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien during talks with Japanese officials in Tokyo.

Mr Nien has been in Japan for an official visit from March 6-10 at the invitation of his Japanese counterpart Nobutaka Machimura. During his stay, Mr Nien held talks with Minister Machimura, paid a courtesy visit to Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and met with Finance Minister Sadakazu Tanigaki and other parliamentarians.

The two sides exchanged views on bilateral issues and other international issues of mutual concern. Mr Nien praised Japan’s commitment to maintain a high level of official development assistance (ODA) for Vietnam at a time when it is reducing its grants to other countries.

Japanese officials lauded Vietnam’s achievements in the Doi Moi (Renewal) process and affirmed that Japan will continue to increase ODA for Vietnam to support the country’s industrialisation and modernisation process. They said Japan supports Vietnam’s bid to join the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and will encourage Japanese businesses to invest in Vietnam as well as create conditions for Vietnamese commodities to enter its market.

Japanese officials also pledged to provide assistance to the Development Triangle in the Mekong River Region.

The two sides agreed to promote the exchange of visits of delegations from the two countries, particularly in culture and tourism.

The two Foreign Ministers exchanged protocols on entry visa exemptions for official and diplomatic passport holders from the two countries on the condition that they stay less than 50 days. The exemption will take effect on May 1, 2005.

On Tuesday, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Khoan agreed to the contents of the protocol to exempt Japanese citizens holding diplomatic and official passports from entry visas. He assigned the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to exchange the protocol with the Japanese side.

ND - (10/03/2005)

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