The agreement was announced after Premier Li Keqiang held talks with his Vietnamese counterpart, Nguyen Tan Dung, yesterday after arriving in Hanoi for a three-day visit, the last leg of a Southeast Asian tour.

The two leaders also witnessed the signing of 12 business deals aimed at boosting cooperation in trade, infrastructure, energy and maritime affairs.

At a joint press conference after the talks, Li said the two nations had achieved "a breakthrough" in enhancing their "comprehensive partnership and mutual trust" by establishing the working group concerning the joint exploration of the South China Sea.

Both nations aim to make "concrete progress" in jointly exploring the Gulf of Tonkin, a northern arm of the South China Sea, but no other details were released.

Read more at South China Morning Post

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