VIETNAM – BRUNEI DARUSSALAM RELATIONS
1. Political Relations:
Since the establishment of diplomatic relations on 29 February 1992, friendly relations and multi-faceted cooperation between Vietnam and Brunei Darussalam have seen good developments, especially in political field.
a. Vietnamese leaders’ visits to Brunei:
+ President Tran Duc Luong paid an official visit to Brunei (12-14 November 2001).
+ Chairman of the Ministerial Council Vo Van Kiet paid an official visit to Brunei on the occasion of the establishment of the diplomatic relations (28 February-01 March 1992).
+ Prime Minister Phan Van Khai attended the 7th ASEAN Summit Meeting in Brunei (05-06 November 2001).
+ Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung paid an official visit to Brunei (16-17 August 2007).
+ Foreign Minister Nguyen Manh Cam attended the Admission Ceremony for Viet Nam to become full member of ASEAN in Brunei (July 1995).
+ Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien paid an official visit to Brunei (13-15 June 2000).
+ Minister, Chairman of the Presidential Office Nguyen Canh Dinh attended the 52nd Birthday Ceremony of His Majesty Hassanal Bolkiah (14-17 July 1998).
+ Defense Minister Pham Van Tra paid an official visit to Brunei (April 2004).
+ Minister of the Ministry of Labour, War Invalid and Social Affairs Tran Dinh Hoan visited Brunei (September 1997).
+ Minister of Health Do Nguyen Phuong visited Brunei (17-18 September 2001).
+ Minister of Education and Trainning Nguyen Minh Hien visited Brunei in the framework of SEAMEO Cooperation (21-22 September 2005).
+ Chief of Vietnamese Army, Lieutenant-general Phung Quang Thanh paid an official visit to Brunei (October 2002).
+ Deputy Minister of Defense, Senior lieutenant- general Nguyen Huy Hieu visited Brunei (15-18 March 2007).
+ Minister of Public Security Le Hong Anh attended the 6th ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on anti trans-national crime in Brunei (AMMTC) (05-08 November 2007).
b. Visits to Vietnam by leaders of Brunei Darussalam:
+ His Majesty Hassanal Bolkiah paid an official visit to Viet Nam (25-27 May 1998); attended the 6th ASEAN Summit Meeting in Ha Noi (December 1998); the 5th ASEM Summit in Ha Noi (October 2004), and the 14th APEC Summit in Ha Noi (18-19 November 2006).
+ The Crown Prince Haji Al Mutadee Billah, Senior Minister, Prime Minister’s Office paid an official visit (20-22 March 2006).
+ Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohamed Bolkiah paid an official visit to Viet Nam (28-30 April 1999) on the occasion of the Admission Ceremony for Cambodia to become a full member of ASEAN.
+ Minister of Health visited Viet Nam (October 1996).
+ Commander-in-chief of the Brunei’s Royal Army, Lieutenant-general Hansi Hanbee paid an official visit to Vietnam (2003).
+ Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Pehin Datu Singamanteri Colonel (Rtd) Dato Paduka Jaji Mohammad Yasmin Bin Haji Umar attended the 100 businessman Forum of South East Asia (23 August 2007).
From the 1st October 2007, Brunei has exempted visa for Vietnamese citizens holding Ordinary Passports for a visit less than 15 days. And from the 8th August 2007, Viet Nam also has exempted visa for Brunei citizens holding Ordinary Passports for a visit less than 15 days.
2. In the fields of Economics and Culture:
Relations in the fields of economics, trade and investment between the two countries are still modest, not commensurate with the good bilateral political relationship. The two-way trade volume reached about 1.5 to 2 million US$ per year, in which Brunei mainly imports from Viet Nam through the 3rd countries. (In 2005, the trade volume was 4.5 US$ million). By the end of June 2007, Brunei had 37 investment projects in Viet Nam with a total capital of 125.8 million US$, ranking 29th among 74 countries and territories investing in Viet Nam.
Brunei annually grants Viet Nam many scholarships for training in the fields of oil and gas and English.
3. Bilateral agreements:
- Agreement on Aviation cooperation: (8 November 1991). In May 2006, the Royal Airlines of Brunei opened direct flights to Ho Chi Minh City.
- Trade Agreement (12-14 November 2001).
- Agreement on Maritime cooperation.
- Memorandum of Understanding on Tourism and Cooperative Agreement between Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Brunei.
- Memorandum on cooperation between the two Defense Ministries (November 2005).
- Memorandum of Understanding on youth and sport cooperation
- Memorandum of Understanding on oil and gas cooperation; and
- Agreement on avoidance of double taxation (August 2007).
4/ Mechanisms for cooperation:
Viet Nam - Brunei Joint committee: On the occasion of the official visit to Brunei by Vietnamese Foreign Minister Nguyen Dy Nien, the two Foreign Ministers signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Joint Committee’s establishment. The two sides agreed to hold the first meeting of the Joint Committee in the beginning of the year 2001 and prepare to sign a Trade Agreement, Agreement of avoidance of double taxation, Agreement of Investment and Maritime’s Promotion and Protection. The two countries agreed that the two Foreign Ministers would be the Co-Chairmen of the Joint Committee. However, up to now, such a meeting has not yet been held.