China head of the International Department of the Communist Party of (CPC) Central Committee, Song Tao on Tuesday, stressed to promote the development of China-Vietnam relations in the new era.

Tao further said that the China-Vietnam ties are essentially the relations between two socialist countries under the leadership of communist parties

During his visit to Vietnam from Monday to Wednesday, ahead of the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Vietnam, he made his remark.

He said that China stands ready to consolidate and promote the traditional China-Vietnam friendship, taking this anniversary of the two countries’ diplomatic ties as an opportunity, and push forward the development of China-Vietnam relations in the new era.

In 2016, both the countries vowed to promote healthy and stable bilateral ties as Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc held talks with his Chinese counterpart Li Keqiang amid differences between the two countries over the disputed South China Sea.

Vietnam along with the Philippines, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan strongly oppose China’s claims over almost all of the South China Sea.

An international tribunal has invalidated China’s extensive claims in the SCS. However, Beijing rejected the tribunal’s verdict, saying it has no legal standing.

Tao met with Tran Quoc Vuong, a politburo member and permanent member of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee’s Secretariat and Hoang Binh Quan, head of the Commission for External Relations of the CPV Central Committee.

The Vietnamese senior officials also spoke Tao and his delegation and praised it as a successful kick-off of the events marking the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The officials further said that Vietnam is willing to work with China to consolidate the traditional friendship, deepen the exchanges and cooperation, and benefit both peoples.