The first security and defence consultations between the European Union and Vietnam were held on 22 November in Brussels. The Dialogue marks a new step in the relationship between the European Union and Vietnam. In particular, it comes after the visit of the High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini to Hanoi in August this year and the signature of the Framework Participation Agreement (FPA) between the European Union and Vietnam in Brussels on 17 October 2019. The Framework Participation Agreement sets the basis for Vietnam to participate in the EU's Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) crisis management missions and operations across the world. The conclusion of this agreement signals the strong interest by both partners to establish a mutually reinforcing cooperation and partnership in the areas of security and defence.
The Dialogue provided an opportunity to explore the way forward for Vietnam to deploy personnel to one of the European Union’s CSDP missions, once the domestic ratification procedures have been completed. Participants confirmed their mutual interest to establish regular consultations on a broad range of security and defence issues, including maritime security and cyber security. Both partners confirmed the importance of the rule of law, including the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, and peaceful settlement of disputes. In addition to discussing further exchanges on Maritime Domain awareness, the European Union also expressed its readiness to share its experience on cyber security, including on the Budapest Convention, the application of international law in cyberspace and implementing norms of responsible state behaviour. During the dialogue, the participants also recalled the importance of the Women, Peace and Security Agenda.
It was agreed that the next round of the dialogue would be held in Hanoi in 2020.
As part of its engagement with Vietnam, the European Union supports the Department of Peacekeeping operations of the Vietnamese Ministry of Defence. Vietnam is among the European Union's priority partner countries in enhanced security cooperation in and with Asia. The European Union appreciated Vietnam's support in strengthening cooperation between the European Union and ASEAN and is looking forward to further cooperation initiatives during Vietnam's chairmanship in ASEAN in 2020.
The Delegation of the European Union was headed by Pawel Herczynski, Managing Director for Common Security and Defence Policy and Crisis Response, European External Action Service. The Delegation from Vietnam was led by Senior Lieutenant General Nguyen Chi Vinh, Vice Minister of Defence.