Timor-Leste and Vietnam are set to strengthen relations following a high-level meeting between Vietnamese Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien and Minister of Tourism, Trade and Industry of Timor-Leste Jose Lucas Da Silva in Siem Reap, Cambodia, during the 54th ASEAN Economic Ministers’ Meeting.
The two sides spotlighted the fruitful development of the bilateral relationship, and briefed each other on the economic and trade development of each country. They said that the bilateral trade still remains modest, reaching only US$33.6 million in 2021.
Timor-Leste spoke highly of Vietnam’s trade potential and opportunities to strengthen cooperation, expressing the desire to further expand it with Vietnam in the fields of transportation, import-export and seaports.
Da Silva said he hoped that Vietnam will support and share information and experience in developing the national one-stop-shop mechanism, and in trade and investment promotion.
Dien affirmed that Vietnam is ready to cooperate with and support Timor-Leste in the fields that Vietnam needs, and Timor-Leste has advantages such as minerals, forest and aquatic industries.
Dien called for Timor-Leste’s support to connect Timor-Leste’s businesses with Vietnamese suppliers.
Cooperation with Vietnam will help both countries integrate deeper into regional and global value chains, he affirmed.
He called on the two sides to perfect the legal framework and economic and trade cooperation mechanisms, strengthen information sharing and exchange of business delegations.
Dien suggested Timor-Leste could facilitate Vietnam’s research activities in oil and gas exploration and production; and cooperate in exploiting and processing forest and mineral resources, mining metal ores and non-ferrous metals, and in producing goods for export to countries with preferential mechanisms for Timor Leste.
Dien also said he hopes Timor-Leste will soon ratify the trade agreement signed between the two countries.