Vietnam PM meets with leaders at G20 summit

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Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has met with leaders from Australia, Ethiopia and the Netherlands prior to the ongoing G20 Summit in Canada and discussed ways to strengthen bilateral ties.

During his meeting with Australian Deputy PM Wayne Swan on Saturday, Dung said Australia was one of the largest trade and investment partners of Vietnam.

Trade between the two countries topped US$1.2 billion in the first quarter, up 34 percent from the same period last year, the PM was cited as saying in a report published on the government's website Sunday.

Swan said his country will continue boosting economic relations with Vietnam and providing aid for infrastructure development.

Dung told Ethiopian PM Meles Zenawi that Vietnam wants to promote cooperation with East Africa via Ethiopia. At the same time, Vietnam can become a bridge for Ethiopia to reach out to other Southeast Asian countries, he said.

Also on Saturday, Dung met with his Netherlands counterpart Jan Peter Balkenende to discuss measures to boost bilateral relations. Both leaders expressed satisfaction that trade between the two countries reached $1.7 billion last year despite the economic downturn.

Leaders from the Group of 20 emerging and advanced nations kicked off two days of talks Saturday evening.

PM Dung will join all discussions on global economic issues and hold bilateral meetings with several countries' leaders. This is the first time Vietnam is taking part in the G20 Summit,  especially as Chair of the Association of the Southeast Asian Nations.

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