Update: 08:30 | 05/06/2018
Visiting defense minister reaffirms Vietnam’s core importance in South Korea’s 'New Southern Policy.'
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (R) receives RoK Defence Minister of the Song Young-
Strengthening military ties between Vietnam and South Korea will advance the interests of both countries and help realize a shared vision, the defense ministers of both countries said on Monday.
Towards this, Vietnamese defense minister Ngo Xuan Lich and visiting counterpart Song Young-moo signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Hanoi.
Among other things, the MoU will boost humanitarian assistance and disaster relief activities between the two defense ministries in the coming time.
Meeting with Young-moo following a welcome ceremony, Lich lauded the visit as a strong breakthrough for bilateral military ties, especially the effective implementation of the Joint Vision Statement on Defense Cooperation with a vision towards 2030 that the defense ministries signed in April 2018.
Both sides exchanged views on global security issues and agreed to implement projects to strengthen bilateral military cooperation, human resources training, search for missing soldiers and post-war bomb and landmine reparation.
Young-moo, who began a three-day visit to Vietnam on Sunday, reiterated Vietnam’s centrality in South Korea’s new push, known as the New Southern Policy, to bring its ties with Southeast Asia on par with other major blocs like the EU and countries like Japan, China
Vietnam's defense minister Ngo Xuan Lich welcomes his South Korean counterpart Song Young-moo (R) during a military ceremony in Hanoi on June 4. Photo by VnExpress/Ngoc Thanh.
He expressed satisfaction that the strategic partnership between the two nations has been flourishing in recent years.
Vietnam is currently South Korea's third largest trade partner and South Korea is Vietnam's second largest trade partner, with bilateral trade volume reaching nearly $61.6 billion last year, according to Vietnam Customs.
South Korea is also Vietnam's biggest foreign investor, with its firms investing more than $50 billion in Vietnam between 1988 and 2016.
Last March, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and his wife touched down in Vietnam for a state visit to strengthen bilateral relations as part of the nation’s New Southern Policy.