Updated on : Thứ Ba, 12/11/2013 - 8:11 SA
VN, Russia enjoy extremely fine relations
VGP – Viet Nam and the Russian Federation have enjoyed a long traditional friendship, said State President Truong Tan Sang in an interview granted to the Russian News Agency Itar Tass on the threshold of President Putin’s third official visit to Viet Nam. 

State President Truong Tan Sang (L) shakes hands with Russian President Putin during his official visit to Russian in July 2012

The Viet Nam-Russia Strategic Partnership was established in 2001 and then upgraded into the comprehensive strategic partnership in 2012.

This firm foundation has enabled bilateral relations between the two countries to improve in both scope and scale. Political relations have enjoyed a high level of confidence while bilateral economic cooperation has been very effective. Humanitarian cooperation has also been expanded.

According to State President Sang to create a new breakthrough in the near future, the two countries should focus on core areas, such as trade and energy - including oil, gas and nuclear power. Military techniques should also be studied and special attention must be given to strategic projects.

Regarding trade ties, the two sides should exert further efforts to negotiate and have an early signing of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Viet Nam and the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Although bilateral trade turnover keeps increasing (nearly US$ 2.5 billion in 2012 and US$ 1.8 billion in the first eight months of this year), it remains at a modest level, accounting for a small portion in the total import-export turnover of each nation.

The FTA will serve as a breakthrough to help increase trade between Viet Nam and Russia to US$ 7 billion by 2015 and a much higher figure by 2020.

According to President Sang, in recent years, the two countries have closely and effectively cooperated on many big projects to look for new oil and gas fields in offshore Viet Nam and in Russian territory.

The joint venture in oil and gas, Vietsovpetro, the two parties have expanded cooperation in a few other joint ventures, such as Vietgazprom, Gazpromviet and Rusvietpetro.

Viet Nam will continue to provide favorable conditions to Russian oil and gas companies to expand gas exploration and exploitation on Viet Nam's continental shelf. The Ninh Thuan 1 Nuclear Power Plant project is making good progress and the two sides should ensure it is carried out safely, efficiently and with the highest quality.

In the near future, Viet Nam will continue to complete its legal foundation for nuclear development and wants Russia to help Viet Nam train human resources with high skill in the field of nuclear power, President Sang affirmed, adding that in the long run, the country wants to be able to master the technology, management and operation of the Ninh Thuan nuclear power plant.

He went on to say that military technical cooperation, a traditional activity between the two nations, is developing effectively. Both sides should continue to promote good relations and think of new forms of cooperation that will contribute to tightening the strategic partnership.

Being comprehensive strategic partnership members, the two nations have closely cooperated in every field with a high level of confidence, especially their fine relationship in national defense and security, he said.

In the recent past, the two sides have effectively implemented all agreements and contracts signed by their leaders. In addition, meetings and contacts at all levels, including meetings between top leaders of the two countries have been organized. These involve a series of annual talks, including strategic dialogues on National Defense and Security and multilateral cooperation at the ADMM+. Such meetings enabled leaders of both countries to timely discuss how to cooperate with each other on national defense, security and on peace and cooperation in the region and the world.

Vietnamese-Russian military technical cooperation is a traditional field. This cooperation has constantly developed and been in line with international laws and practice. In the near future, the countries should raise military cooperation to a higher plane, as in joint-venture production, in research, in setting up service centers and after-sales service as well as in exports to the third countries. In addition, they will continue to co-operate in military training, in scientific research as well as in technology transfer.

In the context of fast changes in the region and the world, the President stated that the two sides need to further tighten their cooperation in the field of national defense and security so that they can contribute to economic development in each country while strongly promoting the development of the Viet Nam - Russia comprehensive strategic partnership and actively contributing to peace, stability and sustainable development in Asia-Pacific and the world.

Regarding Russia-ASEAN ties, President Sang confirmed that ASEAN always wants to promote and expand relations with other partners, including Russia, on the basis of friendship and equality in the interest of peace, stability and common prosperity. In reality, the ASEAN-Russian relationship has developed well in security, politics, economics, culture and development cooperation.

Being a traditional friend of Russia, Viet Nam highly appreciates Russia's role and supports its closer ties with the grouping. After becoming an official member of ASEAN in 1995, Viet Nam backed Russia to become a full Dialogue Partnership member of ASEAN in July 1996. It was the first country to take the role as a coordinator of the ASEAN-Russia Dialogue in the period 1996-1999.

In 2010, in the capacity as Chairman of ASEAN, Viet Nam successfully hosted the second ASEAN-Russia Summit. And at the fifth East Asia Summit, Viet Nam actively supported Russia in joining the event. Viet Nam is willing to continue to act as a bridge for ASEAN-Russian cooperation in the period 2005-2015.

President Putin's upcoming visit to Viet Nam has a special significance towards bilateral relations, serving to promote the implementation of the comprehensive strategic partnership that the two countries have established.

The visit is an occasion for the two State leaders to evaluate opportunities and look for measures to solve any challenges. They will discuss and come to agreement on future orientations to ensure our cooperation stays on the path to high efficiency and quality. They will also review the implementation of agreements reached between Vietnamese and Russian senior officials as well as the progress of major projects between the two countries.

State President Sang said that during his meeting with his Russian counterpart, he will talk about orientations and specific measures to lift cooperation between the two nations, including politics, economics, trade, investment, especially the oil and gas projects, the Ninh Thuan 1 nuclear power plant, military technical cooperation, the strategic cooperation in the field of technology and education and many others./.  

By Khanh Phuong

Thanh Thuy
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