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China-Vietnam Beibu Gulf Agreements Take Effect

The Beibu Gulf Demarcation Agreement and the Beibu Gulf Fishery Cooperation Agreement, which were signed by the presidents of China and Vietnam on December 25, 2000, officially came into effect on June 30.  

China and Vietnam held a ceremony on Wednesday in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam, to exchange documents approving the agreement on the demarcation of the territorial waters, exclusive economic zones and continental shelves of the two countries in the Beibu Gulf. Documents concerning the agreement on Beibu Gulf fishery cooperation were also exchanged.


The area that is the subject of the agreements is known in Vietnam as the Gulf of Tonkin.


At the ceremony, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi and his Vietnamese counterpart, Vu Dung, signed and exchanged the documents.


Also on Wednesday, Vietnamese Deputy Minister Vu Khoan met with Wang Yi, saying that the activation of the two agreements is a significant event in the two countries' relations that creates conditions for building stability and peace in the gulf and enhances their friendly and comprehensive ties.


Wang Yi stated that the two agreements result from attention paid by the two countries' leaders, the direction of the two governments and the joint efforts of both sides. They are beneficial to peace and stability on the Sino-Vietnamese border, long-term peace and stability in the gulf and the brighter development of relations between the two countries.


He said he hoped that both countries would cooperate and jointly implement the two agreements well, and rapidly and satisfactorily settle new issues.


The Standing Committee of the 10th National People's Congress, China's top legislature, and the National Assembly of Vietnam ratified the Beibu Gulf Demarcation Agreement earlier in the month.


While signing the agreement in December 2000, China and Vietnam also inked the Beibu Gulf Fishery Cooperation Agreement and promised that both agreements would take effect at the same time in June 2004.


Negotiations on the demarcation of territorial waters between southern China and northern Vietnam in the Beibu Gulf had continued since 1992.


(Xinhua News Agency, China.org.cn July 1, 2004)

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