Japan-Vietnam Joint Statement
Toward a Strategic Partnership for Peace and Prosperity in Asia

October 19, 2006

Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe and Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam Nguyen Tan Dung held constructive and forward-looking discussions on the occasion of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung's visit to Japan from 18 to 22 October, 2006 as the first official guest invited by Japan's new cabinet. The two sides highly valued the friendship which had been developed by the two countries in the spirit of long-term stability and mutual trust on the basis of the "Japan-the Socialist Republic of Vietnam Foreign Ministers' Joint Statement Toward a Higher Sphere of Enduring Partnership" in 2004. The two sides expressed their determination to further expand and strengthen bilateral relations as strategic partners for peace and prosperity in the Asian region.

1. Promotion of Dialogue

The two sides confirmed their willingness to have more frequent visits and exchanges of views at high level. Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung invited Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to pay an official visit to Vietnam and to attend the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting in coming November. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe happily accepted the invitation.

In order to promote bilateral relations in an even more coordinated and efficient manner, the two sides showed their willingness to foster all types of dialogue in the fields of diplomacy, security, economy and others.

The two sides noted with satisfaction that frequent visits between members of parliaments of the two countries including those of Parliamentary Friendship Associations highly contributed to deepening mutual understanding and cooperation between the two countries, and expressed their wishes for the further expansion of such visits.

2. Japan's Economic Assistance to Vietnam

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung expressed his gratitude to Japan's contribution to Vietnam's economic and social modernization as the largest donor country in Official Development Assistance (ODA), welcoming that the volume of Japan's ODA to Vietnam surpassed one hundred billion yen in the Japanese fiscal year 2005, and hoped that cooperation between Japan and Vietnam will be enhanced in the coming years. Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung emphasized the importance of infrastructure development in such projects as North-South high-speed railways and expressways and Hoa Lac high-tech Park, while affirming his determination to economic reforms and anti-corruption for successful implementation of the next Five-Year Plan for social-economic development in Vietnam. Welcoming Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung's determination, and recognizing the importance put by the Vietnamese government on the infrastructure development, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reaffirmed Japan's firm support for Vietnam's socio-economic development by providing assistance in priority areas such as promotion of growth, improvement in living standard and social aspects, and institutional building while utilizing advanced Japanese technology and expertise. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe took note of the remarks by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, and will give serious consideration to these proposals.

The two sides recognized the importance of continuing cooperation between the Cambodia-Laos-Vietnam (CLV) countries and Japan, especially in the establishment of the CLV Development Triangle. Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung highly valued and requested Japan to further provide assistances to the Development Triangle and encourage Japanese business community to invest in this Development Triangle. The two sides highly valued the previous CLV-Japan Summits and expressed their willingness to hold the 3rd CLV-Japan Summit on the occasion of the 12th ASEAN Summit by the end of this year.

3. Economic Relations

The two sides reemphasized the importance of continuation of Vietnam's Doi Moi policy and Vietnam's integration into the world economy. In this connection, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed his strong support for the early accession of Vietnam to the World Trade Organization (WTO), and expressed his hope that WTO accession would accelerate Vietnam's economic development. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also reiterated Japan's continued support and assistance to Vietnam in the latter's international economic integration, particularly in the post-WTO accession period.

Welcoming the recent close bilateral economic ties, and based on the report of the joint study group, the two sides decided to launch official negotiations on the Japan-Vietnam Economic Partnership Agreement (JVEPA) and hold the first round of negotiation in January 2007. The two sides also reaffirmed their commitment to promotion and early conclusion of the ASEAN-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership (AJCEP) Agreement negotiation, which should include provisions on cooperation.

While highly praising the roles of the Agreement between Japan and Vietnam for the Liberalization, Promotion and Protection of Investment as well as the Vietnam-Japan Joint Initiative in expanding Japan's investment in Vietnam, the two sides reconfirmed their intention to further improve investment environment for Japan's business in Vietnam and promoting Japan's investment through the Vietnam-Japan Joint Initiative Phase II. In that spirit, the two sides called upon Japanese companies to further invest in Vietnam.

Recognizing the enormous potentiality of the commercial exchanges between the two countries, the two sides decided to facilitate favorable conditions for the business circles of the two countries, in the hope of expanding the two-way trade volumes from 8.5 billion USD of the year 2005 to fifteen billion USD by the year 2010.

The two sides recognized the growing importance of reinforcement of the intellectual property protection by developing measures against counterfeiting and piracy, as well as generating cooperation in this field, which will contribute to attract investment and stimulate market growth.

The two sides determined on further developing cooperation in the area of energy efficiency based on Japan's "Asian energy efficiency and conservation program", enhancing cooperation in the area of coal and stockpiling oil, and holding an energy forum.

Recognizing the importance of exchanges in business, the two sides appreciated the economic seminars held on this occasion of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung's visit.

4. Cooperation in Science and Technology

Recognizing the significant role of science and technology in economic competition and global environmental protection, the two sides decided to promote cooperation in the field of science and technology, including Information and Communication Technology (ICT), on the basis of Agreement between Japan and Vietnam on Cooperation in Science and Technology signed last August. In particular, with respect to ICT, the two sides noted the importance of Japan's ODA cooperation project in higher education, which started this year.

Being aware of the importance of cooperation on peaceful uses of nuclear energy, the two sides decided to promote cooperation in this area, including making efforts to lay legal, administrative and other necessary infrastructure. In this regard, they recognized the necessity of nuclear safety, security and non-proliferation, and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe emphasized the vital roles that the IAEA Additional Protocol, the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, and the Convention on Nuclear Safety would play in this respect. The two sides also shared the view that these efforts could lead to discussions on a bilateral agreement for nuclear cooperation in the future.

The two sides decided to initiate a dialogue between the two governments in order to advance cooperation in these fields.

5. Mutual Understanding between the Peoples of the Two Countries

Recognizing that mutual understanding between the peoples of the two countries is the foundation of a closer bilateral relationship, the two sides expressed their determination to further promote mutual understanding through exchanges in the fields of culture, education, tourism and sports. Both sides also shared the view on the importance of youth exchanges, and appreciated the educational effect of the filmmaking activities by students now underway in Vietnam.

Based on the proposal made by Japan's cultural exchange mission to Vietnam last May, the two sides decided to establish a high-level Japan-Vietnam Cultural Exchange Forum to discuss comprehensively exchanges between the two countries and promote specific cultural exchange projects. Both sides welcomed the recent progress made toward the establishment of a Japan-Vietnam Cooperation Committee on the preservation of Thang Long cultural heritage.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe welcomed the progress made in Japanese language education in Vietnam, in particular at a compulsory education level, and reiterated Japan's utmost support for it.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung highly valued Training and Technical Internship Programs for Vietnamese trainees and technical interns, and emphasized the importance of continuation of the programs. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe noted the Vietnamese view on the programs and stressed the importance of enhanced and proper implementation of the programs. The two sides recognized the importance of facilitating business persons exchange in further promoting bilateral economic ties, and shared the view that both should promote the issuance of Multiple-entry visas for temporary business visitors.

The two sides welcomed the success of the ASEAN-Japan Seminar and High-level Conference on Flower Tourism in Da Lat Flower Festival last December and Japan Festival 2006 in Vietnam in August in promoting mutual understanding in two countries, and expressed their wishes for the further exchanges in private sectors, including such festivals in both countries in the future.

6. Cooperation in the International Arena

The two sides shared their recognition that advancing cooperation in addressing regional and global challenges is important. Both sides acknowledged that human security should be jointly addressed by the international community.

In addition, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe praised the constructive role of Vietnam as the Chair of APEC 2006, and the two sides expressed their intention to further cooperate toward the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting in November. The two sides reaffirmed their determination to advance cooperation on specific priority areas and economic integration toward the realization of the East Asian community through the framework of East Asia Summit (EAS), ASEAN+3 and other fora. The two sides expressed readiness to collaborate in the Mekong Region Development as development partners with their experiences.

The two sides reaffirmed their determination to continue to work together for early reform of the UN including the Security Council, and shared the view that the UN reform should enhance the efficiency and the democratization of its activities while further consolidating the basic principles of the UN Charter.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung reaffirmed Vietnam's support for Japan to become a permanent member of the Security Council of the United Nations. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed Japan's support for Vietnam to become a non-permanent member of the Security Council of the United Nations for the 2008-2009 term.

Noting with satisfaction Vietnam's ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), the two sides acknowledged that the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD), international terrorism, drug and human trafficking are serious threats to the security and the stability, and shared their views on advancing bilateral and multilateral cooperation in addressing these challenges together.

The two sides shared their recognition that creating a virtuous circle of economic growth and environmental protection in the steadily growing Vietnam is necessary for sustainable development of Asia and the globe. They expressed their intention that the two Governments would cooperate to promote 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) and sound waste management in Vietnam in the context of the 3R Initiative.

The two sides expressed their deep concerns on the recent developments on the Korean Peninsula. The two sides raised their objections to the nuclear test and strongly urged the DPRK not to make further complications, to return immediately to the Six-Party Talks and to work towards implementation of the Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks and Resolutions 1695 and 1718 of the United Nations Security Council on this problem. The two sides underlined the necessity that the DPRK respond to other security and humanitarian concerns of the international community, including the abduction issue.

The two sides expressed satisfaction at the outcome of the first official visit of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung to Japan, which would open up a new phase in the friendly and multi-dimensional cooperative relationship between Japan and Vietnam.

Tokyo, 19 October 2006

ABE Shinzo
Prime Minister of Japan
Nguyen Tan Dung
Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam

Back to Index