Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong’s upcoming visit to Russia is a highly important event, which will help promote comprehensive strategic cooperation between the two nations, Russian experts said.

Rector of Russia’s Institute of Oriental Studies Alexay Maslov and Vladimir Mazyrin, Director of the Far East Institute’s Vietnam-ASEAN Research Centre under Russia’s Science Academy, spoke highly of the forthcoming visit in an interview with Vietnam News Agency correspondents in Russia just before the Vietnamese Party leader’s visit, which is scheduled for November 24-26.

Both Maslov and Mazyrin said the visit is a good chance for the two sides to discuss their strategic cooperation, thus taking measures to reinforce bilateral relations and enhance political contact at higher levels.

Maslov revealed that the two sides would discuss the establishment of a free trade area between Vietnam and the Europe-Asia Economic Union, which is considered a crucial step towards removing customs and administrative barriers obstructing trade between the concerned parties.

Reviewing Vietnam’s recent economic development, Maslov said the country had reaped great achievements in promoting economic growth as well as attracting foreign investment, becoming one of the leading countries in Southeast Asia in these fields.

This shows that Vietnam’s economy has become increasingly stable and its investment climate is more attractive for foreign investors, he noted.

Regarding economic, trade and investment relations between the two countries over the past few years, Maslov said Russia had set up a subcommittee aiming to boost ties with Vietnam in these fields, led by the Ministers of Trade and Economics as part of the Vietnam-Russia Intergovernmental Committee for Economic, Commercial, Scientific and Technological Cooperation.
A number of benefits could be gained by the two countries if they deepened their comprehensive links, the expert stressed, adding that the Russian Government and enterprises should pay more attention to fulfilling the two countries’ full cooperation potential.

When assessing the part Vietnam could play in Russia’s strategic priority to boost cooperation with Asian Pacific nations in the near future, Mazyrin said Vietnam held an important role in ASEAN. Russia therefore hopes that its relations with Vietnam would help the country establish all-around ties with other ASEAN member states.

According to the two experts, Russia is willing to cooperate with Vietnam on investment, technology, communications and infrastructure construction.

The Truth (Pravda) newspaper of the Communist Party of the Russian Federation ran an article by Ilya Usov, hailing Vietnam’s economic achievements in 2014 and stressing the need for the country to enhance its relations with Vietnam.

According to Usov, Vietnam’s GDP growth and export turnover during the first nine months of this year increased by 5.6 percent and 14.2 percent, respectively.

The Vietnamese Government issued support policies to balance the exchange rate between the Vietnam Dong and USD. The country’s trade surplus and foreign investment attraction also saw remarkable surges, while foreign currency reserves reached a record-breaking level at 35 billion USD.

The article said international economic experts believed Vietnam’s economy would continue to develop further in the coming time. Vietnam’s GDP growth is likely to hit 6 percent in 2015 and 7 percent by 2017.

It concluded that Russia would benefit from expanding links with countries in the Asian Pacific region, including Vietnam.-VNA