Thai Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn (Source: bangkokpost.com)
Bangkok (VNA) - Thailand and Russia are targeting to increase the value of their bilateral trade fivefold in the next five years, announced Thai Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn on February 26.

Apiradi said Thailand proposed setting up a joint panel to promote trade between the two countries to oversee commercial products, services and investment issues.

Thailand sought Russia 's cooperation to buy more agricultural produce, including rubber, rice and processed products, Apiradi said.

Meanwhile, Russia wants Thailand to negotiate a free trade area with the Eurasian Economic Union, which includes Russia , Kazakhstan , Belarus , Armenia and Kyrgyzstan , she added.

Thailand is one of Russia 's biggest trade partners in Southeast Asia while Russia is Thailand 's biggest trade partner in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

In 2015, the value of trade between Thailand and Russia reached 2.4 billion USD.

Apiradi, part of a Thai delegation visiting Russia from February 23 to 25, said the push for improved trade comes as Thailand and Russia hope to forge closer ties on a wide range of fronts.

The visit also aimed to prepare for a visit to Moscow by Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on May 18.-VNA