Russian Ambassador to Vietnam Konstantin Vnukov (Source: http://laodong.com.vn)
Hanoi (VNA) – Russian Ambassador to Vietnam Konstantin Vnukov has hoped that Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s visit to Russia from May 16-18 will promote Vietnam-Russia bonds in trade and investment as they are not matched with bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership.

Speaking to Lao Dong (Labour) Newspaper prior to the PM’s visit, where he will attend the Russia-ASEAN Summit in Sochi, the Ambassador said his country gave high estimation to Vietnam’s new leadership and expressed his delight to see a high degree of trust established by the two countries.

He referred to cooperation in defence and military technologies as a manifestation of the trust, saying it is broadest among the sectors.

The ambassador also underscored the training of Vietnamese military officers as a priority and the reinforcement of Vietnam’s defence capacity as Russia’s keen interest.

Apart from producing submarines and jet fighters for Vietnam’s navy, Russia is interested in jointly developing a number of military equipment and technologies, he said.

Regarding the East Sea issue, he stated that Russia wants countries directly involved in sovereignty disputes in the waters to adhere to the principle of not using force, and seek diplomatic solutions to resolve disputes.

The diplomat affirmed that his country backs and assists relevant parties’ negotiations to settle disputes on the basis of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea ( UNCLOS ) 1982, the Declaration of Conduct of Parties in the East Sea ( DOC ) signed in 2002, and the Guidelines for the Implementation of the DOC in 2011 .

Russia hopes Vietnam and China – the two main strategic partners of Russia – will maintain friendly and stable relations, the ambassador said.

Konstantin Vnukov also affirmed that his country is interested in safeguarding navigation and aviation freedom in the East Sea, where Russia’s ships and planes operate.

He noted that military clashes and militarisation in the region will threaten the economic interests of Russian petroleum firms operating in Vietnam’s continental shelf, including Rosneft, Zarubeznev, Gazprom and the Vietnam-Russia joint venture Vietsopetro.

On Russia’s assessment of ASEAN’s role for regional security, the ambassador highlighted the central role of the ten-Southeast Asian nation group.

He said at the upcoming Russia-ASEAN Summit (May 19-20) in Sochi, leaders of ASEAN member nations and Russian President Vladimir Putin will approve a statement, which will declare Russia’s support for ASEAN’s central role in ensuring security in the region.

Russia and ASEAN will also reiterate their stance on the East Sea issue at the summit, he added.-VNA