Japan pledges ¥54 billion for Vietnam

Kyodo

Japan is offering roughly ¥54 billion in loans to Vietnam for infrastructure projects.

The loan offer, unveiled Thursday at a meeting in Tokyo between Foreign Ministers Fumio Kishida and Pham Binh Minh, is aimed at a highway project and an airport terminal project, both in Hanoi, and a hydroelectric power project in southern Vietnam.

The government hopes that the meeting between the foreign ministers will help boost relations between Japan and Vietnam at a time when both countries are involved in territorial disputes with China in the East and South China seas.

Kishida and Minh agreed to advance ongoing bilateral dialogue between defense and foreign affairs officials, Japanese officials said. Kishida went out of his way to praise their defense cooperation.

Kishida explained Japan’s determination to deal with the Senkaku Islands dispute “calmly and resolutely but without escalating” tensions, with Minh expressing hope that Japan and China will resolve it in line with international law, the officials said.

Minh said Vietnam’s position on its territorial dispute in the South China Sea remains unchanged and that China and members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, including Vietnam, intend to work out a regional code of maritime conduct.