Prime Minister Phan Van Khai's activities during final day of 7th apec summit

Ha Noi, Sept. 13 (VNA) -- Prime Minister Phan Van Khai attended meeting sessions and met with Prime Minister Jenny Shipley of New Zealand and other leaders during the final day of the 7th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit in Auckland, New Zealand, on Sept. 13.

Speaking to the New Zealand PM, the Vietnamese PM expressed thanks to her country for extending hospitality to the Vietnamese delegation and spoke highly of New Zealand's efforts for the success of the Summit.

In his talks with foreign leaders, PM Khai affirmed: "Being an APEC member, Viet Nam has been doing its utmost to boost reform and openess of the economy in conformity with mutually recognized international criteria".

Prime Minister Phan Van Khai said: "Viet Nam defines that the economic-technical cooperation programme plays a key role in boosting the process of facilitating trade and investment as well as helping developing countries approach new areas, thus creating favourable conditions for poor nations to effectively take part in regional development activities". He pointed out that Viet Nam has exerted great efforts in carrying out its commitments through the building and supplementing its annual individual action plan as stated in the Bogor Declaration in 1994.

On the coming global trade talks and Viet Nam's entry to the World Trade Organization, the Vietnamese leader said: "In order to make the new round of multilateral trade talks favourably significant for developing countries, the joint initiative by the World Bank (WB) and the United Nations Conference for Trade and Development (UNCTAD) of holding a round of talks for development is of great interest. Having yet obtained WTO membership, Viet Nam wishes to take part in the new round of multilateral trade talks enjoying WTO full membership regulations. APEC should support those APEC economies that are not yet WTO members to enjoy these regulations.

A number of APEC members' leaders addressed APEC sessions over the past two days.

Saltan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei said that most of the crisis-striken economies have shown signs of recovery. He added that considerable challenges are still ahead, however, and that confidence building remains one of the key factors.

New Zealand PM Jenny Shipley stressed APEC plays a key role in the Asian-Pacific region as it serves as the foundation for sustainable growth.

President Kim Te Chung of the Republic of Korea noted that APEC should pay more attention to the increasing socio-economic gap within a nation and between nations. APEC should step up efforts to boost cooperation in education, science and technology transfer, and human resource development through job training and education activities.

US President Clinton pledged that the US would closely cooperate with other countries to ensure all economies, including developing ones, to take part in settling economic-financial issues through new mechanisms such as the Financial Stability Forum.

Later the day, APEC leaders approved a declaration.

"We welcome the improved performance and prospects of our economies since we last met, and commend the actions taken to reform those economies affected by the crisis," says the declaration.

Strengthening economic-technological cooperation is a fundamental element to improve living conditions and promote prosperity, narrowing the development gap among Asian-Pacific economies. The financial crisis showed the importance of cooperation in building management capacity, exchanging science and technology, and infrastructure development, the declaration says.

Viet Nam joined APEC in November 1998 together with Russia and Peru, bringing the forum's membership to 21. APEC was established in 1989 in response to the growing interdependence among Asia-Pacific economies.