Dr. Son was replying to a SGGP journalist’s question that which fields that Russia have calling for investors, suitable with Vietnamese businesses’ ability in the interview before a visit by President Tran Dai Quang to the Russian Federation.
According to Mr. Son, the Vietnam-Eurasia Economic Union Free Trade Agreement (VN-EAEU FTA), officially taking effect from October 5 last year, has given Vietnam preferential accesses to the potential large market of five EAEU member countries with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) nearing US$2.2 trillion and a population of 183 million people.
The newly effective FTA has pushed Vietnam and Russia export import turnover up to $1.37 billion, a year on year increase of 27.2 percent. Of the number, Vietnam’s export to Russia went up 28.4 percent and the country has received trade surplus.
Mr. Morgulov Igor Vladimirovich, deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, said that was a joyful signal showing the practicality and effectiveness in the bilateral relationship between the two countries.
Besides advantages from the FTA, Russia has given Vietnamese firms significant preferential treatments. Firstly, the Russian Government and local authorities always pay special attention to Vietnamese businesses, positively and efficiently work with Vietnamese authorized agencies to provide them with legal information and local investment policies as well as assistances in transport, customs and administrative procedure simplification to implement projects in Russia.
For instance, the Russian side has supported TH True Millk to carry out a breeding and milk processing project in Moscow and Kaluga on schedule by delivering land without auction, providing low interest loans, building farm, completing legal procedures and increasing labor quota for Vietnamese.
In addition, Russia has facilitated Hanoi-Moscow multifunctional complex’s operations, supported Vietnamese companies to function a light industrial park in Moscow regularly, securely and efficiently.
Secondly, Vietnamese businesses have enjoyed assistance polices from Russia for projects in agriculture and consumer goods. The project of TH True Milk has been assisted with 30 percent of investment costs. Local authorities in the Republic of Bashkortostan and Primorsky Krai province have committed to giving Vietnamese investors in light industry rent incentives, preferential treatments in auction and assistances to build traffic, electric, water and gas infrastructures.
Amid the context that western nations have put embargo on Russia, Vietnamese companies have more dominances than many other nations to penetrate into Russian and EAEU markets. Still, they need to choose investment directions suitable with their ability and advantages to develop brand names and compete in the markets.
Talking about Vietnam’s position in the foreign affair policy of Russia, Mr. Nguyen Thanh Son said that according to the foreign affair policy of the Russian Federation approved by President Vladimir Putin in November 2016, Russia considers itself as an inseparable part of the Asian-Pacific region.
Therefore, the country has positively boosted integration in the region and socioeconomic development programs in Siberia and the Far East, established the areas to be a foreign investment attracting destination and a security structure with comprehensive, open, transparent and fair cooperation on collective principle.
The Russia’s stressing of the policy is totally suitable with the embraced situation. Analysts said that the policy is a breakthrough in the eastbound policy of Russia.
Mr. Son said that Vietnam plays a particularly important position in the eastbound policy. It is a traditional comprehensive, reliable and friendship strategic partner of Russia. The two sides have profound understanding of each other, so Vietnam has the strength like a bridge spanning, promoting and boosting relations between Russia and ASEAN nations.
Vietnam locates in an important maritime route attaching Russia’s security and economics to the Asia-Pacific region. Besides bilateral benefits directly from oil exploitation in the continental shelf of Vietnam, Russia regards the Southeast Asian nation as an important chain in its maritime benefits in East Asia in particular and Asia-Pacific in general.
In addition, Vietnam has been the first country signing the EAEU FTA which members comprise Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. The FTA attendance has made the country an entrance gateway for the economic area to the Southeast Asia region. From Russian angle, Vietnam’s participation in the agreement is a step helping materialize the eastbound policy.
Comprehensive strategic partnership
Ambassador Nguyen Thanh Son said that the strategic partnership relationship between Vietnam and Russia was established in 2001 and upgraded into comprehensive strategic partnership in the following year.
Inheriting Vietnam-Soviet relations which valuable assets are large achievements of the two sides’ traditional friendship and cooperation challenged over time, the comprehensive strategic relationship has much benefited Vietnam in many fields comprising politics, military security, economics, culture, education, health and society.
In politics, visits by high ranking leaders of the two countries, the mechanism of strategic dialogue and political consultation between the two countries’ foreign affair ministries; the Party, National Assembly and people diplomatic operations have helped the two sides exchange information and tightly cooperate at multilateral forums especially those at the United Nation within ASEAN-Russia cooperation framework, contributing in upholding peace and stabilization in the Asia-Pacific region and in the world.
Russia has supported Vietnam as host of APEC 2017, willing to share hosting experiences and closely work with Vietnam to successfully organize the event.
The two sides affirm their support of solving territorial disputes in the East Sea with pieceful measures on the basis of international law comprising the United Nations Convention on Law of the Sea – UNCLOS, the spirit of the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and towards building the East Sea Code of Conduct (COC).
The two sides agree that UNCLOS member nations should abide by and fully implement their duties according to the convention.
In army security, Vietnam and Russia have focused on developing national defense, army security and techniques and obtained good results for the last past. Russian modern weapons and ammunitions together with the professional training of Vietnamese personnel at Russia’s army technique institutions have helped Vietnam intensity defense ability and cope with military attack dangers from hostile forces.
The two countries have stepped up cooperation in four key fields comprising trade, investment, oil and gas and electricity. The relationship and connectivity between the two countries has been reinforced and developed through hundreds of thousands of Russian and Vietnamese visitors annually, the community of nearly 60,000 Vietnamese people who are living and doing business in Russia and thousands of Vietnamese students in the country.
The coming visit by President Tran Dai Quang will be an important event, continuing fortifying the belief between the two countries and marking a new step ahead in the bilateral relationship.
Many Vietnamese scientists and managers have grown up from Soviet Union schools, including former General Secretary Nong Duc Manh, former Prime Minister Phan Van Khai and other country’s leaders.
Over time and practice, Russia’s education and training industry has showed its superiorities, which equip students with not only knowledge but also systems thinking method and second order logic so that they can apply efficiently in study and in practice after school. That is a strength of Russia’s education and training compared to other nations in the world.
Studying in Russia has been chosen by Vietnamese youth. With monthly scholarship, their living standard in the country has been quite good.
The Russian Government increases scholarships for Vietnamese citizens yearly and the country has become the world’s largest scholarship grantor.
At present, Vietnam has nearly 3,000 students in Russia, an important source to supplement high-qualified intellectuals and technical staff and a span linking up Russian and Vietnamese people.