State President Truong Tan Sang’s trip to Russia, the Czech Republic and Azerbaijan from May 8-15 has achieved its goal of improving political trust to form a basis for economic, trade and investment ties.

The visit came on the occasion of the 65 th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties with Russia and the Czech Republic and major celebrations during this year, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh told the Vietnam News Agency in an interview reviewing the President’s tour.

Russian President Vladimir Putin welcomed the Vietnamese President’s attendance in a ceremony celebrating the 70 th anniversary of the Russian victory in the Great Patriotic War as a manifestation of the Vietnamese Party and people’s substantial support for the Soviet Red Army and people in the fight against fascism that ended the Second World War and motivated independence struggles across Asia, Africa and Latin America.

Both leaders reached consensus on specific ways to realise priority projects in energy, military technology, education - training, culture and tourism.

In the Czech Republic, host and guest leaders consented to strengthening political links by facilitating all-level visits and mutual support in the international arena.

They agreed to further improve the role of the Inter-Governmental Committee on Economic-Trade and Investment Cooperation, Minh said, adding that the Czech Republic regards Vietnam as a priority partner in its trade policy.

At the end of the Vietnam-Czech Republic economic and tourism forum, cooperative agreements were signed, including one by the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam and the Czech Republic Export-Import Bank that is expected to offer convenient financial services to the Vietnamese community in the country and several in Central Eastern Europe.

The Czech leaders hailed the Vietnamese community in the country as a model for other ethnic minorities and vowed all possible support for them.

Azerbaijani President Ilham Alyev, for his part, declared Vietnam a key partner in Southeast Asia and called for the first meeting of the Inter-Governmental Committee on Economic-Trade and Science-Technology Cooperation.

They shared their views on the significance of oil-and-gas cooperation, saying it is a highlight and spearhead of bilateral economic and trade ties.

A series of deals in oil and gas, customs, agriculture and transport were also inked to serve as a legal framework for their engagements.

Regarding the developments in the East Sea, the leaders expressed support for the settlement of disputes by peaceful means in line with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea.

When asked about which factors that will propel Vietnam’s ties with the above countries forward, Minh cited a history of long-standing friendship and multifaceted collaboration, legal frameworks including impending free trade agreements with the Eurasian Economic Union and the European Union, and the Vietnamese community of intellectuals, successful entrepreneurs and those studying and working in host nations.

The States, governments, legislatures and businesses spoke highly of Vietnam’s potential and position in Southeast Asia, considering it a friendly bridge with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Minh said.

As a result, Minh confidently stated that the all-around links between Vietnam and Russia, the Czech Republic and Azerbaijan will progress and yield fruitful results.-VNA