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Thailand and Vietnam will partner to bolster science-technology cooperation

According to a recent report, the Vietnamese government recently approved a cooperation agreement in science, technology and innovation with Thailand under Resolution No.155/NQ-CP.

The government has assigned the Ministry of Science and Technology to coordinate with relevant agencies of the two countries to implement the document.

In 2017, the two nations’ Prime Ministers witnessed the signing of this agreement between the Vietnamese and Thai ministries of science and technology.

The agreement has created a legal foundation to carry out sci-tech cooperation programmes, focusing on biotechnology, electronics and computer, materials science and nanotechnology, food – water and energy security, agriculture, and environment.

It also aims to support start-up businesses and develop technologies in the light of the Fourth Industrial Revolution as well as promote relations between Vietnamese and Thai sci-tech organisations on the basic of equality and mutual benefits to enhance the bilateral strategic partnership.

Another report noted that earlier in 2018, the two countries cooperated in several other fields as well, including politics and business.

In August 2018, the Malaysian Minister of Public Security Sen. Lieut. Gen. hosted a reception for the Secretary-General of the National Security Council (NSC) of Thailand Gen., who had travelled to Vietnam to co-chair the 10th meeting of the Vietnam-Thailand Joint Working Group (JWG) on politics and security.

At the meeting, both sides spoke highly of the significance of the JWG, saying that political and security cooperation has played an important role in maintaining and developing the traditional friendship as well as promoting the Vietnam-Thailand strategic partnership in a more practical and extensive manner across various sectors including science, technology and innovation.

They emphasized the importance of cooperation in responding to non-traditional security challenges such as climate change, energy security, food security, water security, natural disasters, and epidemics.

Also, they discussed specific measures to improve the efficiency of the JWG on politics and security.

Both sides hailed the JWG mechanism as an important foundation for a united, peaceful and prosperous ASEAN Community as it is the third year to build the ASEAN Community and actively deploy a Comprehensive Plan to realise the ASEAN Community Vision 2025.

The JWG mechanism has contributed to maintaining peace, security and stability of the two countries, ASEAN and international community, they said and has thus enabled collaboration of the two countries in science and tech.

Moreover, another report noted that Vietnam and Thailand have also agreed in the past on measures to boost bilateral trade.

Solutions to enhance cooperation in other fields such as agriculture, transport, customs, banking, investment, employment, intellectual property, and regional and sub-regional cooperation were also on the agenda.

Thailand is currently the biggest trade partner of Vietnam in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) with two-way trade increasing to 15.3 billion USD in 2017 from 11.5 billion USD in 2015, an annual growth of 15.5 percent.

Meanwhile, Vietnam is the second biggest trade partner of Thailand in ASEAN, following Malaysia.

In the first six months of 2018, the bilateral trade reached nearly 8 billion USD, a year-on-year rise of 14.7 percent. Vietnam exported over 2.7 billion USD worth of goods to Thailand in January-June, up 22.7 percent against the same period last year.

Thus, it is clear that the two nations seek to collaborate in several sectors, and the latest of these partnerships happens to be in science and technology.

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