China and Vietnam have agreed to handle maritime disputes through dialogue, Chinese state media reported on Monday, months after ties between the two countries hit a three-decade low in a row over a Chinese oil rig in disputed waters.
The two neighbors must respect each other and focus on long-term interests, President Xi Jinping said, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
"Sino-Vietnamese relations have been advancing continuously since the two nations established diplomatic relations, despite some twists and turns," he said.
Vietnamese President Truong Tan Sang said his country was ready to "properly deal with maritime issues through friendly consultation so that the issues will not affect its relations with China", according to Xinhua.
Sang said Vietnam was ready to step up high-level contacts and non-government swaps to strengthen its links with China.
The two countries agreed to "address and control" maritime disputes, state media reported last month, in the wake of the row sparked by China's May 2 deployment of a $1 billion-oil rig to waters within Vietnam's exclusive economic zone.
Defense leaders from the two countries held talks last month in Beijing, and both sides agreed to "gradually resume" military ties, Xinhua reported.