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INTERNATIONAL > East Asia & Pacific

Yomiuri’s exclusive interview with Vietnamese President

  • January 13, 2018
  • , Yomiuri , p. 7
  • JMH Translation

Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang gave an exclusive interview to the Yomiuri Shimbun at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi on Jan. 11. With the Vietnam-Japan diplomatic relationship due to celebrate the 45th anniversary this September, he said the two nations’ ties  are “in the best shape ever” and noted that Vietnam will “continue to work closely with Japan in fields of mutual interest” for the sake of regional and global peace and stability.

 

According to the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this is the first time for Quang, who is the head of state under the country’s Constitution and the No. 2 man in the Communist Party of Vietnam, to give a person-to-person interview to a Japanese media outlet, except for when receiving courtesy calls from executives of press organizations.  This suggests that he is placing importance on Vietnam’s relations with Japan with an eye on the early effectuation of the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade pact forged by Vietnam, Japan, and nine other nations, as well as China’s construction of military bases in the South China Sea.

 

Quang pointed out that the “Vietnam and Japan have been increasingly attaching importance to each other” ever since the two countries established diplomatic ties in September 1973. In particular, he praised the fact that a record number of reciprocal visits were made in 2017 by high-ranking officials of the two nations, including visits to Vietnam by the Japanese Emperor and Empress, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and Lower House Speaker Tadamori Oshima, and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to Japan. He looked back on 2017 by saying “it was a year in which our bilateral relationship entered a new stage.”

 

Quang pursued a career in the field of public safety and previously served as Minister of Public Security. In April 2016, he was elected to the presidency by the National Assembly. He is regarded as one of the leading candidates to succeed Nguyen Phu Tron (73 years old), who was re-elected as General Secretary of the Communist Party in the 12th party convention held in January 2016.

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