Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Dy Nien visits the United States

Minister of Foreign Affairs Nguyen Dy Nien visits the United States from Sept. 20,2000.

During his four-day visit that ended on September 24, Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien met on separate occasions with Secretary of State Madeline Albright, National Security Deputy Advisor General Donal Kerrick, Senators John Kerry and Chuck Hagel, members of the House of Representatives Lane Evans and Philip Crane, representatives of the US business circles and General Secretary of the Organisation of American States (OAS) Cesar Gaviria.

Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien has discussed the two countries' relations including the ratification of the bilateral trade agreement, and the Vietnam visit by President Bill Clinton, with US officials.

Mr. Nguyen Dy Nien also discussed with the US officials co-operation between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the US and between ASEAN and OAS during the period Vietnam chairs the ASEAN Standing Committee.
During these meetings, Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien briefed the US side of the situation in Vietnam and ASEAN, and Vietnam's foreign policy of independence, sovereignty, diversification and multilateralisation. He affirmed that Vietnam attaches importance to developing its relations with the US and expressed his delight at the constant and positive development of the relationship between the two countries since the normalisation of their diplomatic relations in 1995. However, the relations are yet to match their potentials, he added.

He called for further efforts from both sides to accelerate the process of ratifying the Vietnam-US Trade Agreement.
Given the difference of views between the two countries on some sensitive issues, Mr. Nguyen Dy Nien said, the two sides should push ahead the exchange of views and meetings aimed at boosting mutual understanding, building confidence, and promoting economic, commercial, cultural, educational, scientific and technological co-operation.
The development of bilateral relations must be based on the principles of equality, mutual benefit, respect for each other's independence and sovereignty, and non-interference in each other's internal affairs, he stressed.
The Vietnamese Foreign Minister asked the US to pay due attention to the humanitarian issue of easing the sufferings of Vietnamese citizens still suffering the consequences of the war, particularly the victims of Agent Orange.

He thanked US Congressmen of both Parties and other American friends for their active contributions to enhancing bilateral relations.

Representatives of the US government and US Congressmen appreciated the Vietnamese Foreign Minister's visit and new steps of development in relationship between the two countries over the past time. They renewed their hopes that the two countries' relations would be boosted and the upcoming visit to Vietnam by President Clinton would open a new chapter in the US-Vietnam relations. They said that there were many favourable conditions for the two countries to promote their co-operation in economic, commercial, cultural, education and scientific-technical fields.
They renewed their thanks to Vietnam for the goodwill and co-operation shown in settling the MIA (missing in action) issue. They also hoped that the Vietnam-US Trade Agreement would be soon ratified by the two countries' legislative bodies.

As president of the ASEAN Standing Committee and Co-ordinator of the ASEAN-US relations, Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien exchanged views with the US and the OAS General Secretary on issues relating to the relations between ASEAN and the US and ASEAN and the OAS. The US and OAS sides expressed their readiness to co-operate with Vietnam in discharging its new post.

Foreign Minister Nien informed representatives of US leading groups about Vietnam's socio-economic development and its policies on foreign investment and co-operation, particularly new incentives for foreign investors and businessmen. He also expressed the hope that the US business circle would boost their investment in Vietnam.