Hanoi (VNA) - Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc highlighted cooperation opportunities for Vietnam and Russia to boost trade and investment ties at a reception in Hanoi on December 24 for Chairman of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation Vyacheslav Viktorovich Volodin.

The Government leader noted with pleasure that the particularly reliable political relationship between Vietnam and Russia have been maintained and strengthened through the exchange of delegations at all levels, especially those at the high level.

PM Phuc believed that the ongoing official visit to Vietnam by Volodin will contribute to the enhancement of the bilateral relationship.

Many corporations and businesses of Vietnam want to invest in Russia, he said, expressing his hope that Russia’s investment projects in the fields of infrastructure development, energy and transport in Vietnam will be successfully carried out.

The PM urged ministries and agencies of Vietnam and Russia to closely coordinate and effectively in implementing the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Vietnam and the Eurasian Economic Union in a bid to realize the target of 10 billion USD in two-way trade by 2020.

The two sides need to actively remove non-tariff barriers, especially for agricultural and aquatic products, he said.

PM Phuc suggested the State Duma urged Russian agencies to allow more Vietnamese firms to export seafood to the Russian market in accordance with provisions of the above-mentioned FTA as well as of the World Trade Organisation and international practices.

Energy cooperation, especially oil and gas exploration and exploitation, continues to be an important pillar of the Vietnam-Russia cooperation, he stressed, affirming that Vietnam supports and is willing to create favourable conditions for Russian oil and gas enterprises to operate effectively in Vietnam.

The Vietnamese leader expected that the State Duma and Volodin to support this strategic cooperation.

PM Phuc thanked the Russian side for helping Vietnam train human resources and hoped the country to increase the number of scholarships granted to Vietnam to 1,000 per year, and boost cultural exchanges and support each other in tourism promotion.

He appreciated the effective support from the State Duma and Volodin for boosting cooperation between localities of the two countries, and expected the State Duma to continue serving as a bridge between Vietnamese and Russian localities on the basis of signed agreements.

PM Phuc suggested the State Duma and Government of Russia to assist Vietnam in building an e-Government, and create favorable conditions for the Vietnamese community to live and do business stably in the country.

Having spoke highly of cooperation between the National Assembly of Vietnam and the State Duma, the PM applauded the exchange of all-level delegations between the two parliaments, saying that this has contributed to enhancing coordination and sharing of information and experience in law-making and supervision, well as promoting the implementation of bilateral cooperation agreements.

For his part, Volodin held that the relationship between Vietnam and Russia has developed positively, and high-level meetings have contributed to fostering the bilateral ties.

He proposed a meeting in Moscow between Vice Chairman of the State Duma  Ivan Мelnikov and Vietnamese Ambassador to Russia Ngo Duc Manh with Vietnamese enterprises and overseas Vietnamese in Russia to seeking ways to remove difficulties and obstacles facing them.

Volodin emphasised the need to establish a legal foundation, which he said that it is very necessary to develop an e-Government, adding that the Russian side is ready to work closely and share its experience with Vietnam in this field.

According to the chairman, Vietnam has become an attractive destination for Russian tourists. In 2017, the number of Russian visitors to Vietnam exceeded 512,000, representing year-on-year increase of 30 percent. The figure is expected to hit 700,000 in 2018.-VNA