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During his head-of-state visit to Vietnam last week, Raul Castro Ruz, First Secretary of the Cuban Communist Party’s Central Committee and President of the Cuban Council of Ministers, had talks with Vietnam’s Party General Nguyen Phu Trong and met with State President Truong Tan Sang, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung.
Raul told the Vietnamese top leaders that the Latin American country had over the past year improved its macro-economic management model as an “update of the economic model”, which was enacted at the 6th Congress of the Cuban Communist Party in April, 2011.
He said Cuba was eager to learn from Vietnam in monitoring socio-economic development, via periodical exchanges between the two countries’ sectors. He highly valued Vietnam’s doi moi, which was a precious experience for Cuba now.
For example, he said Cuba wished to be supported by Vietnam in developing its backward agriculture, especially in cultivating food and industrial plants. The Vietnamese leaders said Raul’s visit to Vietnam, which followed Trong’s official visit to Cuba in April, 2012, was “an important landmark in the relationship between the two countries and two peoples.”
The two sides also discussed the multi-faceted relationship between the two parties and the two nations, and specific measures to be taken to further deepen comprehensive bilateral cooperation, especially in the economic, trade and investment fields.
Dung stressed the need for the two countries to prioritise development in sectors as agriculture, energy, telecommunications and pharmaceuticals. The Cuban leader also said Cuba would further help Vietnam train doctors and health specialists. Vietnam-Cuba trade turnover was $274.3 million last year and Vietnam is Cuba’s second largest trade partner in Asia.
The two countries are now strongly cooperating in many sectors like agriculture, energy, oil and gas, information technology, telecommunication, bio-technology, education and health care.
Vietnam’s National Oil and Gas Group (PetroVietnam) is implementing an oil and gas project in Cuba. Also, Vietnam’s Housing and Development Holdings Group is carrying out an 18-hole golf course project in Cuba.