At the talks (Source: VNA)
Moscow (VNA) – Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh reiterated the Vietnamese Party and leaders’ consistent policy of prioritizing strengthening traditional friendship and comprehensive strategic partnership with Russia during talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow on November 24.

Minh, who is also Deputy Prime Minister, is on Russia visit from November 23-25. He briefed his host about Vietnam’s major orientations to socio-economic development and external policies in the next five years.

Expressing satisfaction with high political trust between the two nations, both sides agreed to further facilitate the exchange of all-level visits on the Party, State, government, National Assembly, ministry and local channels; effectively maintain existing dialogue and consultation mechanisms; and hasten negotiations and signing of several agreements to fine-tune legal framework for bilateral coordination.

In the first ten months of this year, two-way trade hit 2.2 billion USD. The two countries are set to effectively realise the Vietnam-Eurasian Economic Union free trade agreement towards lifting the figure to 10 billion USD by 2020.

In order to facilitate exports and imports, host and guest pledged to embark on projects in the fields of energy, industry, mechanical engineering, including establishing an automobile manufacturing joint-venture in Vietnam, opening a Vietnam light industry complex in Moscow, and TH True Milk’s dairy farm in Russia’s Moscow Oblast and Kaluga province.

The two ministers underscored energy ties as one of the pillars strategic to each country’s development, and vowed all possible support for Vietnamese and Russian oil and gas firms to enhance coordination.

They were committed to continuing effective and close bilateral cooperation in national defence-security, especially military technical aspect, as well as expanding ties across science-technology, education - training, culture, tourism, labour and liaison among localities.

Minh thanked the Russian Foreign Ministry and agencies concerned for offering support to Vietnamese nationals living in the host country.

On multilateral cooperation, the two countries will continue working closely together at multilateral forums such as the United Nations, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum, the Asia-Europe Meeting, the East Asia Summit, and the ASEAN Regional Forum.

Vietnam backs Russia’s active role in Asia-Pacific and stands ready to serve as a bridge connecting Russia and ASEAN, Minh said.

Lavrov, for his part, hailed Vietnam’s increasing stature in the region and the world.

The two ministers expressed their delight at the countries’ similar viewpoints in almost all regional and global matters of significance, including those involving Asia-Pacific and the Middle East.

Turning to the East Sea issue, they were unanimous in the peaceful settlement of disputes in line with international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea; the full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC) and the early formulation of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).

They described the maintenance of regular political consultation between the two foreign ministries as significant to further promoting Vietnam-Russia strategic partnership and joint action in international arena.

Following the talks, Minh and Lavrov signed a cooperation scheme between the two foreign ministries for 2017-2018.

Earlier, Minh laid a wreath at a memorial dedicated to unknown martyrs and Ho Chi Minh Monument in Moscow./.