Hanoi, Vietnam.- Vietnam and Cuba have confirmed their mutual desire to strengthen their bilateral relations in all areas as the 35th Session of the Intergovernmental Commission between the two nations begins today in this capital.

Cuban Minister of Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment, Rodrigo Malmierca, who leads the Cuban delegation, gave a brief account of the results since the previous meeting (Havana, November 2016) and described them as positive.

Malmierca highlighted the progress of Vietnamese investments in several sectors of the Cuban economy, such as construction, renewable energy, industry, tourism and infrastructure development.

He pointed out that Vietnam in 2016 reaffirmed Cuba´s second most important trading partner in Asia and Oceania and the tenth in the world, and that by the end of August bilateral trade jumped 4.7 percent.

The minister also highlighted the growing number of Vietnamese companies doing business with Cuba, already exceeding a hundred.

Concerning Cuba’s exports to Vietnam, he said that they have experienced a 19,5-percent growth, with a slight recovery in drug and vaccine sales.

He also highlighted the recent arrival of a brigade of Cuban doctors already serving in a hospital in Hanoi.

Malmierca devoted special attention to the common actions within the program of scientific-technical exchange for its cardinal importance for both nations.

Vietnam’s Construction Minister, Pham Hong Ha, who presides over the Intergovernmental Commission along with Malmierca, said that Vietnam-Cuba cooperation is having an excellent moment and he recalled the frequent exchanges of delegations in the last year.

After recalling that in 2016 bilateral trade reached USD$ 230m, Pham Hong Ha expressed his confidence that the agreements signed from this intergovernmental mechanism will contribute to boost them.

The 35th Session of Vietnam-Cuba Intergovernmental Commission will conclude tomorrow with the corresponding protocol signing.