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Cablegate: (U) Deputy Secretary Negroponte's September 11, 2008

VZCZCXRO1376
OO RUEHCHI RUEHCN RUEHDT RUEHHM
DE RUEHHI #1041 2560849
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 120849Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY HANOI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8431
RUEHZS/ASEAN COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS HANOI 001041

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS
STATE FOR EAP/MLS

E.O. 12598: N/A
TAGS: OVIP NEGROPONTE PREL ECON ERTD AMGT VM
SUBJECT: (U) DEPUTY SECRETARY NEGROPONTE'S SEPTEMBER 11, 2008
CONVERSATON WITH VIETNAM PM NGUYEN TAN DUNG

SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED. FOR INTERNAL USG USE. NOT SUITABLE FOR
INTERNET POSTING.

1. (U) September 11, 2008; 1700; Hanoi, Vietnam.

2. (U) Participants:

U.S.
The Deputy Secretary
Ambassador Michael Michalak
DAS Scot Marciel
PolCouns Brian Aggeler
D Special Assistant Kaye Lee
D Special Assistant Ted Wittenstein
PolOff Christian Marchant (Notetaker)

VIETNAM
PM Nguyen Tan Dung
Office of Government DG Bui Huy Hung
MFA Americas Department DG Nguyen Ba Hung
MFA Assistant Director Americas Department Le Chi Dzung

3. (SBU) SUMMARY. In an extremely cordial meeting the Deputy
Secretary and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung agreed that recent
achievements in U.S.-GVN relations were "irreversible" and committed
to deepen economic ties and military-to-military cooperation. The
Deputy Secretary voiced support for Vietnam's educational goals.
The Prime was receptive to the Deputy Secretary's request that
Vietnam work with the United States to reach an agreement on the
construction of a New Embassy Compound. END SUMMARY.

--------------------------------------------- ----
ECONOMIC, MILITARY, AND ENVIRONMENTAL COOPERATION
--------------------------------------------- ----

4. (SBU) Reviewing the day's meetings, PM Dung and the Deputy
Secretary agreed that the two sides had set down a clear path to
further strengthen bilateral cooperation. PM Dung highlighted the
establishment of a Working Group on Economic and Trade Cooperation
and negotiations on a Bilateral Investment Treaty as evidence of
increased economic cooperation, and urged the United States to move
forward in recognizing Vietnam's status both as a market economy and
making it a Generalized System of Preferences beneficiary. In the
area of military cooperation, PM Dung noted progress in preparing
for political, security, and military talks in October. The Deputy
Secretary observed that he had a good discussion with MND Vice
Minister Hieu and stated that improved military-to-military
relations were important to peace and stability in the region. PM
Dung noted that he was pleased with efforts to establish a mechanism
for cooperation on climate change and rising sea levels.

---------------------
EDUCATION COOPERATION
---------------------

5. (SBU) PM Dung highlighted his desire to establish an education
taskforce as agreed during his June visit to the U.S. Noting his
conversation with DPM/ Education Minister earlier in the day, the
Deputy Secretary expressed his support for Vietnam's goal to have
10,000 students receive PhDs overseas in the next 10 years. The
Deputy Secretary also voiced support for Vietnam's efforts to
improve its general education system, pointing to the formation of
an education task force as an important step.

--------------------
NEW EMBASSY COMPOUND
--------------------

6. (SBU) Noting that he had raised the subject with both DPM/FM
Khiem and VFM Minh, the Deputy Secretary emphasized the need to move
forward on a new embassy. PM Dung commented that the GVN had just
sent a diplomatic note on the issue and hoped that it would form the
basis for positive discussion on this topic. The Deputy Secretary
said that he asked U/S Kennedy to come to Hanoi as soon as possible
to resolve all outstanding issues. PM Dung said that he would
welcome the visit.

---------------
LOOKING FORWARD
---------------

7. (SBU) At the conclusion of the meeting, the Deputy Secretary
stressed his belief that President Bush and the GVN had put
bilateral ties on a new plateau and provided a firm basis for moving
forward in the future. The two sides agreed that the progress made
in bilateral relations was irreversible.

MICHALAK

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