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Viet Nam vows to honour commitments
By Hu Qihua (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-10-08 23:39

China received further affirmation of Viet Nam's commitments to keep peace and stability in the Beibu Bay and South China Sea during Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to the country.

In the joint communique released on Friday, both countries vowed to honour their commitments to the Beibu Bay Demarcation Agreement, the Beibu Bay Fishery Co-operation Agreement and the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, promising not to take any unilateral action that may further complicate or exacerbate the situation.

Reiterating their support for the principles of mutual understanding and give-and-take, the two neighbours agreed to avoid taking drastic military measures in implementing demarcation in the Beibu Bay.

They also pledged not to use force or threaten to use force in the agreed areas.

The previous two agreements were signed between China and Viet Nam in December 2000 and officially came into effect as of June 30, 2004. The declaration was between China and the 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

On the land border issue, both sides agreed to speed up the process of delineating and placing markers and complete the delineation of the border on time.

On maritime rights, the two countries vowed to maintain negotiations and increase their frequency so as to seek a basic and long-term resolution which is acceptable to both, the document says.

"The communique shows the willingness of both sides to make the border a boundary of durable peace, friendship and stability," said an official source with the Chinese delegation.

Territorial disputes over the Sino-Vietnamese border consist of the demarcation of the land boundary, and the Beibu Bay as well as sovereignty of maritime rights and interests in the Nansha Islands and their adjacent waters. Both sides have agreed to resolve these problems through peaceful talks and consultations.

A joint working group was established in 1995 to negotiate the territorial issue of the disputed Nansha Islands. The two countries have agreed to seek a peaceful solution, and even co-operation on the Islands.

The two sides also reaffirmed the significance of building an ASEAN-China free trade zone in the communique.

China said it will support Viet Nam in joining the 147-member World Trade Organization at an early date and hopes to complete negotiations with Viet Nam soon.

Viet Nam also promise not to apply three non-beneficial provisions that China accepted for its accession into the world trade body.

Viet Nam also confirmed its commitment to the one-China policy, pledging not to develop official ties with Taiwan.

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