30 January 2015 - At the invitation of Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert F. del Rosario, Viet Nam’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh visited the Philippines on 29-30 January 2015. During the visit, the two Ministers co-chaired the meeting of the Philippines-Viet Nam Joint Commission on concluding a Strategic Partnership.
During his stay in Manila, Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh also paid a courtesy call on Vice President Jejomar Binay.
On the Proposed Strategic Partnership
On the basis of amity, equality, mutual respect and cooperation, the two sides stressed that bilateral relations between the Philippines and Viet Nam are growing in various aspects, including in political, trade and investment, fisheries, marine and oceanic affairs, as well as defense and security cooperation, among others.
As a follow up to the agreement between the leaders of the two countries, both sides began discussions towards the establishment of a Strategic Partnership and its elements with a view to elevating the level and intensity of bilateral exchanges between the two countries.
On Regional Issues
The two sides exchanged views on regional and international issues of common concern. On the South China Sea (SCS), the two Ministers expressed their serious concern over the ongoing massive reclamation activities that pose threats to the peace and stability in the region as well as to the lives of many people across the various coastal states in the SCS.
The two Ministers agreed that concerned Parties should adhere to the ASEAN-China Declaration of Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) and soon conclude a Code of Conduct (COC) in view of the urgency of the issue and exercise restraint from undertaking any action that may escalate tension in the SCS. The two Ministers reaffirmed their commitments to a peaceful resolution of disputes in the SCS in accordance with international law and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
They reiterated their commitment to continue bilateral and multilateral cooperation towards the forging of an ASEAN Community and upholding the centrality and unity of ASEAN in the evolving regional architecture.
The two Ministers also reaffirmed the invaluable friendship between the Philippines and Viet Nam and the importance of their partnership in ASEAN. END