Minister of Construction Nguyen Thanh Nghi held a working session with Cuban Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment Rodrigo Malmierca Diaz in Hanoi on September 27.
Minister Nghi noted that the implementation of the two countries’ trade agreement has not produced desired outcomes due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
He stressed that Vietnam has been making efforts to ensure rice supply for Cuba in accordance with reached agreement, to help Cuba ensure food security and social stability.
Regarding Vietnam’s investment in Cuba, the minister noted that two Vietnamese firms – Viglacera and Thai Binh – have invested in five projects in Cuba, two of which have been put into operation with good results.
Vietnam has also maintained cooperation with Cuba in agriculture and fisheries to help Cuba step by step become self-sufficient in food. At present, the two sides are focusing efforts to carry out the 2019-2023 joint rice farming project in Cuba. The Vietnamese government has also approved the idea on two new projects proposed by Cuba in developing aquaculture and maize cultivation in Cuba.
Noting Cuba’s strength in health care and bio-technology, Minister Nghi said Vietnam has a need for cooperation in those fields. He suggested that the two countries can cooperate not only in the import-export of vaccines and drugs but also in the research to develop and produce vaccine, biological products and medicine either in Vietnam or Cuba for both domestic consumption and export.
Cooperation in other fields, such as construction, transport, communications, banking, finance, sports, culture, broadcasting and science-technology, is also implemented in line with bilateral commitment, Nghi said, adding that the two sides have completed the draft plan of action to implement the bilateral mid-term economic agenda. He hoped that the draft can be approved for signing during the upcoming visit to Vietnam by the Cuban Prime Minister.
The Cuban Minister shared the assessment of Minister Nghi on bilateral cooperation in the recent past. He appreciated Vietnam’s efforts to ensure rice export to Cuba, saying that it is of great importance for Cuba.
He expressed a hope that the two countries will intensify cooperation particularly in health care, pharmaceuticals, vaccine and bio-technology.
He asked the Vietnamese Construction Ministry to encourage Vietnamese firms to attend the international trade fair in Cuba in November this year, through which promoting trade and investment ties.