The Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations and the Vietnam-Russia Friendship Association held a meeting in Hanoi on January 30 to celebrate the 65th anniversary of the establishment of Vietnam-Russia diplomatic ties.

Addressing the ceremony, President of the Vietnam-Russia Friendship Association (VRFA) Dao Trong Thi said that over the past 65 years, the friendship between Vietnam and Russia, initiated by President Ho Chi Minh and nurtured by the leaders and people of the two nations, remains strong.

Notably, since the two countries established their Strategic Partnership in 2001 and upgraded it to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership in 2012, the bilateral ties have thrived in politics, economics, trade, investment, security, defence and education, Thi said.

He showed his profound gratitude for the support from the Soviet Union in the past and Russia at present to Vietnam during its struggle for liberation and in its current development, adding that the assistance has been vital to Vietnam’s achievements over the past years and forms a firm foundation for the two countries’ cooperation and comprehensive strategic partnership.

Along with enhanced political relations, economic-trade collaboration has also produced significant results. Trade between the two nations rose from 300-400 million USD in the 1990s to nearly 4 billion USD in 2013. Cooperation in oil, gas and energy has also been efficient, with the establishment of three more joint ventures besides the Vietsovpetro, Thi stated.

Regarding people-to-people exchange, he shared that the VRFA and the Russia-Vietnam Friendship Association have served as a bridge connecting localities and organisations between the two sides in culture, education, science technology, economics, trade, sports and tourism.

Russian Charge d’Affaires V. Bublikov said leaders of the two countries have made regular visits during recent years. He noted that the Russia visit by Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong in November last year marked an important milestone in bilateral relations.

The diplomat highlighted the role of people-to-people diplomacy in strengthening the relationship between the two countries, adding that the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations and the VRFA have been contributing to fostering mutual understanding and collaboration between the two peoples.-VNA