10:56′ 04/02/2009 (GMT+7)
Deputy PM Nguyen Thien Nhan and Swiss Vice President and Economic Minister Loris Leuthard.
VietNamNet Bridge – During his trip to Switzerland, Deputy PM Nguyen Thien Nhan on February 2 met with Swiss Vice President and Economic Minister Loris Leuthard, Minister of Home Affairs Pascal Couchepin and State Secretary for Education and Research Mauro Dell’ Ambrogio.
In the meeting with Vice President Loris Leuthard, the two sides exchanged information about the socio-economic development situation of each country and measures to cope with the ongoing financial crisis.
Vice President Leuthard affirmed that Switzerland considers Vietnam a top priority in its development assistance policy, including assistance for Vietnam to integrate into the world economy in the WTO period.
To promote trade and investment cooperation with Vietnam, Switzerland urged Vietnam to consider negotiations on the establishment of a free trade area with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), comprising Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Lichtenstein. The two sides agreed to assign experts to research this issue.
Deputy PM Nguyen Thien Nhan said education and training is a key field for cooperation between the two countries. Switzerland welcomed Vietnam’s proposal on the signing of a framework cooperation agreement on tourism training and asked Vietnam to consider the opening of a direct air route between the two countries.
In the meeting with Swiss Home Affairs Minister Pascal Couchepin and the State Secretary for Education and Research Mauro Dell’Ambrogio, the two sides discussed bilateral cooperation in education and training.
Accordingly, Switzerland pledged to assist Vietnam in training in tourism, restaurant, hotel, finance and banking and some hi-tech fields. Switzerland will also help Vietnam train at least 10-15 doctors per year (granting 2-3 full scholarships).