Vietnam, Russia gear towards US$10 billion trade in 2020

Saturday, 2017-09-09 04:21:22
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Deputy PM Trinh Dinh Dung (right) and Russia’s First Deputy PM Igor Ivanovich Shuvalov sign the meeting's minutes. (Credit: VGP)
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NDO/VNA –Vietnam and Russia have agreed to effectively implement the Vietnam-Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) Free Trade Agreement (FTA) in order to create breakthroughs in economic, trade and investment ties between the two countries, gearing towards bilateral trade of US$10 billion in 2020.

The consensus was reached during the 20th meeting of the Vietnam-Russia Intergovernmental Committee for Economic-Commercial and Scientific-Technological Cooperation in Ho Chi Minh City on September 8.

The event was co-chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Trinh Dinh Dung and his Russian counterpart Igor Ivanovich Shuvalov.

In his opening remarks, Deputy PM Dung highlighted the long-standing friendship and the comprehensive strategic partnership between Vietnam and Russia, which, he said, has developed fruitfully across fields, contributing to national construction and development in each country.

The annual meeting of the committee aims to materialise political commitments and determination between the two countries’ high-ranking leaders, by putting forth specific and inclusive solutions in order to advance the bilateral relationship in a more effective and pragmatic fashion, he said.

The Deputy PM noted that bilateral trade has regained its growth rate, especially after the Vietnam-EAEU FTA took effect, and reached nearly US$2 billion in the first seven months of 2017, up 27% year-on-year.

As of June 2017, Russia had 115 foreign direct investment (FDI) projects worth US$1.05 billion in Vietnam, while Vietnam invested in 18 projects valued at US$2.4 billion in Russia, Deputy PM Dung said, adding that the number and quality of projects on investment, science and technology have increased.

At a press conference following the meeting, Deputy PM Dung announced that the two sides have agreed on concrete measures to step up cooperation in a wide range of areas, from economy, trade, agriculture, energy, mining, finance and banking to education-training, science-technology, transport, health care, construction, labour, culture, sports and tourism.

As part of efforts to boost bilateral trade, the two sides will increase the export of Vietnam’s agro-forestry-fishery and consumer products to Russia, while continuing to work with each other to improve the quality of exports, ensuring product quality, food hygiene and safety.

Deputy PM Dung said the two sides agreed to accelerate the implementation of joint projects on industry, energy, oil and gas, and infrastructure construction, and consider possibilities for partnering in urban railway and metro projects.

In the field of energy, the two sides hailed the operation of Vietnam-Russia joint ventures in oil and gas exploration and exploitation in Vietnam’s continental shelf and in Russia’s territory.

They agreed to cooperate in building and upgrading thermo-electric and hydro-electric plants in Vietnam.

Russia’s First Deputy PM Igor Ivanovich Shuvalov said he is satisfied with the outcomes of the 20th meeting of the intergovernmental committee, adding that bilateral trade remains modest.

He said that Russia will pay attention to the import of Vietnamese seafood and agricultural products and is willing to establish joint ventures specialising in farm produce with Vietnam.

The Russian official also held that the two countries boast potential for cooperation in industry such as auto assembly, and education-training. Russian enterprises desire to join in the construction of underground railways in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

He expressed his belief that Russia will continue to be Vietnam’s important partner and hopes that Vietnamese enterprises will gain a firm foothold in the Russian market.