Last updated: Thursday, May 16, 2013
Vietnam- Russia Boosting Comprehensive Strategic PartnershipPosted: Friday, August 03, 2012
President Truong Tan Sang has completed the State visit to Russian Federation from July 26 to 30, at the invitation of President Vladimir Putin.
President Vladimir Putin received President Truong Tan Sang in resort city of Sochi, Black Sea, where Russian Federation often received important foreign leaders.
“The visit took place in the context of Vietnam-Russia strategic partnership developing in depth and efficiency with increasing inputs. On the basis ever-increasing importance of political-diplomatic relations, multi-facet cooperation has been strengthened, especially in strategic fields such as energy and military technology”, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh replied in a press conference on President Truong Tan Sang’s visit to Russian Federation.
In the framework of the visit, President Truong Tan Sang held talks with President Vladimir Putin, met with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Acting President of Russian Federation Council Torosin and Acting President of Russian Duma I.I. Mennikov.
In Moscow, President Truong Tan Sang laid a wreath at Unknown Soldiers Tomb, President Ho Chi Minh Monument and V.I. Lenin Mausoleum, met with Russian veterans and experts working in Vietnam in the past and representatives of Russia-Vietnam Friendship Association and visited some economic and science establishments of Russian Federation.
Fine and lasting diplomatic relationship
The relationship was marked on January 30, 1950 by the official establishment of diplomatic relations between Democratic Republic of Vietnam and Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (Soviet Union). On June 16, 1994, Vietnam and Russian Federation signed Treaty on basic principles of bilateral friendship relations.
Vietnam-Russia political relations have been developing with high reliability. The two sides have frequently exchanged high-level delegations, especially during his term of office, President V. Putin officially visited Vietnam twice in March 2001 and November 2006, and Prime Minister D. Medvedev visited Vietnam in October 2010.
The two countries have established annual strategic mechanism of diplomatic-security-national defence cooperation of First Deputy Foreign Ministers and regular political consultations of Deputy Foreign Ministers and Directors of the two Foreign Ministries. Annually, the two countries hold strategic dialogue on diplomatic-security and national defence.
The two sides share the same views on several regional and international issues, coordinate closely and support each other on regional and international forums such as UN, APEC, ARF, etc., and promote cooperation in ASEAN-Russia framework. The 2nd ASEAN-Russia Summit was held successfully in Hanoi in October 2010. Vietnam actively supported the admission of Russia to ASEM in October 2010 and participation in East Asia Summit in 2011.
Since the signing of “Joint Declaration on Vietnam-Russia Strategic Partnership” in March 1, 2001, Russian Federation has become a strategic partner of Vietnam. The event has opened up a new era of bilateral cooperation in all fields.
Imprints of economic cooperation
Economic, trade and investment cooperation between Vietnam and Russian Federation continues in recent years. Bilateral trade value in 2011 was US$1.98 billion, 8.1 percent more than 2010 and expected to be US$3 billion in 2012. According to Vietnam-Russia Inter-governmental committee on economic, trade, science and technology, bilateral trade value will reach US$10 billion by 2020. Vietnam and Customs Alliance (Russia, Belarus and Kazastan) are proceeding with a feasibility study on the establishment of a free trade area and the negotiation will start soon.
Russian Federation is expanding big investment projects in Vietnam, especially in such sectors as oil and gas, mining, energy and tourism. Vietnam has increased significantly investments in Russia from over US$100 million in 2008 to US$776 million. However, economic, trade and investment cooperation between the two countries remains modest, incompatible with potentials. President Truong Tan Sang emphasized that the two countries should make new headways, including early conclusion of FTA between Vietnam and Customs Alliance (Russia-Belarus-Kazastan).
Energy cooperation is a success story in Vietnam-Russia relations with the signing in October 2010 of inter-governmental agreement on the building of the first nuclear power station in Vietnam. The two sides are actively preparing for the construction of Ninh Thuan nuclear power station I with safety and high economic efficiency, making the project the symbol of bilateral cooperation in 21st century.
Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh also disclosed that, besides the extension of the operation of Vietsovpetro joint venture to 2030, the two sides will continue to expand cooperation in exploration and exploitation of oil and gas in Vietnam and Russian Federation and also in third countries. In Vietnam, in addition to Gazprom and Zarubezhneft, other leading oil and gas groups of Russia such as Lukoil and TNK-BP have started their oil and gas projects in Vietnamese continental shelf. While in Russia, Rusvietpetro joint venture has started the first oil flow in North Khosedayuskoye in September 2010 and in Visovoi in July 2011. Gazpromviet joint venture will soon start the first gas exploitation this year. Also in the framework of the visit, President Truong Tan Sang attended the inaugural ceremony of the first oil flow at West Khosedayskoye mine of Vietnam-Russia joint venture, Rusvietpetro.
During the talks, Vietnam and Russian Federation reaffirmed that the two sides will continue to facilitate the activities of businesses and Vietnam-Russia joint ventures in expanding exploration and exploitation of oil and gas in Vietnamese continental shelf, in compliance with international law, as well as in Russia and third countries.
At Vietnam-Russia Business Forum held on July 30, President Truong Tan Sang pointed out that economic and trade relations are part and parcel of the comprehensive cooperation between Vietnam and Russia. Vietnamese government encourages and facilitates Russian investors and businesses in economic cooperation, especially in trade, oil and gas, energy, mining, science and technology, education and training, tourism, etc.
Full agreement was reached during President Truong Tan Sang’s visit to Russian Federation. On July 27, the two sides issued Joint Statement on intensification of comprehensive strategic partnership reaffirming that President Truong Tan Sang of Socialist Republic of Vietnam and President Vladimir Putin of Russian Federation took note that since the signing of the Joint Statement on strategic partnership of 2001, bilateral cooperation between the two countries have unceasingly developed and consolidated, well worthy of the tradition of friendship and mutual assistance between the two nations. The two sides are fully committed to developing further Vietnam-Russia relations in the spirit of comprehensive strategic partnership.
Two Heads of State agreed to increase political dialogues at all levels, especially at highest level, to strengthen further the relations between parliaments, political parties, sectors and localities of the two countries, and promote people’s diplomacy, including expansion of exchanges between young people of the two countries.
Two Heads of State supported the search for new possibilities to promote two-way trade, including diversified and free trade, cooperation between financial and banking institutions of the two countries, expansion of investment and credit cooperation, as well as cooperation in exploiting and processing of minerals, manufacturing, energy and others.
Two sides took note of the continued military technical cooperation and partnership in national defence and security, in compliance with basic principles of international law and in joint efforts to meet the challenges and new dangers to security, for peace, stability and sustainable development in Asia-Pacific. Two sides reaffirmed the need to expand cooperation in science-technology and education-training as well as cooperation in humanity field so as to increase mutual understanding between the two peoples and to expand social foundation for comprehensive strategic partnership between Vietnam and Russian Federation.
In the same framework, Vietnam and Russian Federation signed a series of important documents including MOU between respective ministries of agriculture on agricultural cooperation; MOU between two customs offices to exchange statistics on bilateral trade; joint action programme against customs violations in 2012-2013; protocol of agreement on judicial and legal cooperation on civil and criminal issues and additional protocol of August 25, 1998; cooperation programme between ministries of culture in 2013-2015; agreement on science cooperation between Vietnam Institute of Science and Technology and Russian Academy of Science.
Russian press ran full coverage of President Truong Tan Sang’s visit, emphasizing on the long-lasting and profound friendship and highlighting dynamic bilateral cooperation between the two countries. Russian press also quoted Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s appreciation of President Truong Tan Sang’s visit considering it an important contribution to the new height of bilateral relations.
The visit together with ever-increasing bilateral relations is commitments of the leadership of the two countries to promote the existing strategic partnership.