The President of the Republic receives the credentials of the Ambassador of Vietnam

The President of the Republic, Mr Nicos Anastasiades, received today, at a formal ceremony at the Presidential Palace, the credentials of the Ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam to the Republic of Cyprus, stationed in Rome, Mr Cao Chinh Thien.

Presenting his credentials, the Ambassador said:

“Your Excellency Mr Nicos Anastasiades, President of the Republic of Cyprus,

Your Excellency Mr Ioannis Kasoulides, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Cyprus,

First of all, please allow me to express my special thanks to the leaders of the Republic of Cyprus for the solemn ceremony of presentation of credentials, as well as the warmly and thoughtful welcome that the Republic of Cyprus reserved to me.

Today is a special day for me. I have already expressed this emotion to some Cypriot friends and I would like to take this opportunity to express my honor to be appointed as the Ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary accredited to the Republic of Cyprus.

The Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the Republic of Cyprus celebrated 40 years of diplomatic ties in 2015 and we organized many memorable events to celebrate this milestone moment. The relationship between our two countries is developing very fast.

However, we need to recognize the fact that bilateral exchanges between Vietnam and Cyprus in many areas are still not fully equivalent to the potential of the two countries. I think that, with the advantages already available, we can absolutely foster more this relationship, thereby enabling our citizens to study, work, travel, and cooperate in economic sectors, in order to support each other to develop.

In my opinion, our two countries can allow many products that Vietnam produces, such as coffee, rice and other agricultural products, to access to the market of the Republic of Cyprus. The Vietnamese community is one of the largest communities in the Republic of Cyprus and they can contribute to the economic development of the Republic of Cyprus and enhance the economic ties with Vietnam. Opportunities for both countries are real and realizable. And I am willing to serve as a bridge to turn that opportunity into reality.

Vietnam supports the ongoing negotiating effort aiming at a comprehensive and mutually agreed settlement of the Cyprus problem, in accordance with the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the High Level Agreements, a settlement which will reunify Cyprus.

Once again, I thank you very much for the thoughtfulness and hospitality of the Republic of Cyprus. I would like to extend my best wishes to the development of relations between the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the Republic of Cyprus.

Thank you.”

Receiving the credentials, the President of the Republic said:

“Excellency,

It is with great pleasure that I receive today your Letters of Credence, appointing you as the new Ambassador of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam to the Republic of Cyprus. Please accept my congratulations for your appointment and my sincere wishes for every success during your tenure.

Cyprus and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam have maintained friendly ties and a close cooperation in international fora since the establishment of their diplomatic relations more than 40 years ago. The relations between our two countries have not, however, exploited their full potential since there is great capacity for further strengthening our bilateral cooperation in various fields, such as in the political, economic, cultural, academic and financial sectors. The two countries can also strengthen the legal framework of their bilateral cooperation through mutually beneficial bilateral Agreements, including cooperation between our respective Ministries of Foreign Affairs.

Cyprus, as an EU member state, will continue working constructively towards further strengthening the relations between the EU and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and, since Vietnam is a key partner country within ASEAN, express its readiness to assist the effort to bring the two regions even closer.

Excellency,

As regards the ongoing negotiating process to reach a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem, since May 2015 when the two sides resumed negotiations significant convergences have been achieved on an important number of issues related to the chapters of Governance and Power-Sharing, Economy, the EU and to a lesser extent Property.

To this end, on 26 October 2016, and following a number of intensive negotiating phases, it was assessed that the progress observed allowed the two sides to proceed with the next phase of the negotiating process, in November and at Mont PAlerin of Switzerland.

A phase which consisted of the following hierarchical steps:

– Reaching an agreement on criteria that should be applied as regards territorial adjustments.

– Presenting maps which would accurately reflect the said criteria.

– Following such an overall agreement on territory, setting the date for holding the next phase of the negotiating process: an enlarged meeting or multilateral Conference to discuss the Chapter of Security and Guarantees.

In parallel, the two sides would intensify their discussions with the aim of closing the vast majority of pending issues in the remaining Chapters, as well as on other aspects related to the implementation of the settlement, among others, the Day 1 and what it would entail and the economic dimensions, in particular those related with the banking sector of the Turkish Cypriot community and the assessment of the costs, including compensation and reinstatement costs.

Unfortunately, and despite the constructive stance and the compromising proposals put forward by the Greek Cypriot side in order to facilitate discussions and reach a positive outcome, the two sessions held at Mont PAlerin on 7-11 and 20-21 November did not yield the desired outcome.

In this respect, I wish to, yet again, reiterate that I remain ready and committed not only to continue the process based on the 26th October understanding between the two leaders and from the point we left negotiations at Mont PAlerin, but to also further intensify our dialogue with the aim to achieving further convergences on most of the outstanding differences on all the Chapters already discussed.

At the same time, I wish to reassure that I remain wholeheartedly committed and determined to achieve the goal of reaching a settlement and reunifying our country, so as to fulfill the vision of the people of Cyprus and build an attractive future for our youth and the generations to come, setting an example for peace-making and enhancing security and stability in our region.

A settlement based on a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation with political equality, as set out in the relevant Security Council Resolutions, the High Level Agreements and the Joint Declaration of February 2014, with a single international legal personality, a single sovereignty and a single citizenship.

A settlement that will:

– Reunite our country, its people, the economy and institutions;

– Create a win-win situation for all Cypriots, taking into account the sensitivities and concerns of both communities;

– Ensure a modern member-state of the EU and UN, enjoying full sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity;

– Restore and fully respect the fundamental freedoms and human rights of all its lawful citizens;

– Rid Cyprus of third country military troops or guarantees, an anachronism in today’s World.

To this end, Turkey’s contribution in tangible terms in these negotiations is vital. There is no solution that can be reached without Turkey’s input. We do therefore expect Turkey, which is responsible for the illegal stationing of more than 40,000 occupation troops in Cyprus, to take practical and concrete steps towards this direction, taking into account not only the benefit of the people of Cyprus but also the positive impact a settlement will have to regional stability and cooperation.

Excellency,

Almost four years ago, just after my election as President of the Republic of Cyprus, this country was faced with nothing less than economic collapse. Today, Cyprus can be justifiably projected as a success story of economic reform. With the determination of my government, the resilience of key productive sectors of the economy and the sacrifice and hard work of the Cypriot people, we have achieved:

– to address fiscal imbalances, through growth-friendly consolidation,

– to have a restructured and fully recapitalized banking sector, mainly through big international investors,

– to undertake and implement radical structural reforms,

– to return to the international markets much earlier than any other programme country,

– to restore our credibility and regain confidence in the Cypriot economy.

Our ambitious reform agenda aspires to lay the foundations for long-term sustainable growth, improving the business environment which will increasingly attract foreign direct investments in the productive sectors of the economy. Towards this direction, there is a continuing process to modernise and reform the current tax and legal framework, while the effort to reform the public service and modernize our legislation continues, with additional measures underway such as accelerated licensing procedures, updated permanent residency and citizenship programmes, the introduction of e-government and sector-related incentive schemes. Our reform agenda is aiming to eventually transform our economic model, to enhance our competitive edge and to attract foreign direct investments in order to achieve sustained growth and prosperity for all Cypriots.

Excellency,

In concluding, I welcome you in Cyprus and I would like to assure you of the support of myself and the Government of the Republic of Cyprus during the execution of your High Duties. Moreover, I would kindly ask you to convey a message of genuine friendship and good will to the President of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, H.E. Mr Tran Quang.”

Present at the ceremony were the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Ioannis Kasoulides, the Head of Presidency at the Presidential Palace, Mr Kypros Kyprianou, and the Chief of Protocol, Mr Marios Kountourides.

Source: Press and Information Office