Envoy: US considers Vietnam top Southeast Asian partner

By Anh Ngoc   January 9, 2019 | 12:07 pm GMT+7

The U.S. regards Vietnam as its leading partner in Southeast Asia, its ambassador to Vietnam has said.

The U.S. wants to boost ties with Vietnam and with ASEAN, Daniel Kritenbrink said at a meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh at the foreign ministry in Hanoi Tuesday.

American businesses highly value the Vietnamese market and want to invest more in it and expand, a ministry statement quoted the envoy as saying.

The U.S. also seeks greater cooperation in issues such as strengthening maritime and aviation safety in the South China Sea, known as the East Sea in Vietnam, and implementing resolutions of the U.N. Security Council.

Minh too called for greater bilateral cooperation.

U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel Kritenbrink (L) meets with Vietnams Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh in Hanoi on Tuesday. Photo courtesy of Vietnams Ministry of Foreign Affairs

U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Daniel Kritenbrink (L) meets with Vietnam's Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh in Hanoi on Tuesday. Photo courtesy of Vietnam's Ministry of Foreign Affairs

The meeting took place amid speculation that Vietnam could host the second meeting between the leaders of the U.S. and North Korea.

The South Korean media has reported that U.S. and North Korean diplomats recently met several times in Hanoi and discussed plans for a second summit.

The three governments have not commented on the reports but the South Korean ambassador to Vietnam, Kim Do-hyon, said Vietnam has good relations with both Koreas and the U.S. and experience in organizing international conferences, and so it "will be of great significance" if the next U.S.-North Korea meeting takes place in Vietnam.

Defense ties between Vietnam and the U.S. have been growing since 2016, when President Barack Obama decided to lift the ban on the sale of assault weapons to Vietnam. The Trump administration has identified Vietnam as a "cooperative maritime partner."

 
 
go to top