President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Ladies and gentlemen,
Once again, I would like to wish a sincere welcome to my colleague, President of Vietnam Nguyen Minh Triet.
We have just held talks which, as you saw, concluded with the signature of a large number of documents, strategic documents and project documents, and this is particularly valuable in the current situation.
Over the course of many decades our countries have built up friendly and trusting relations, relations of a special nature you could say. Today’s talks reaffirmed our commitment to strengthening the strategic partnership between the Russian Federation and Vietnam. This is reflected in the Joint Declaration we adopted and in the agreements that have just been signed.
Our bilateral trade reached a figure of $1 billion last year, and this year we hope to reach a figure of $1.5 billion. But the President and I agreed that we do not want to stop there and have set even higher targets. We want to take our bilateral trade to a figure of $3 billion, and in the future raise it to $10 billion. These are the goals that we have set our sights on now.
Our trade growth and all of our economic cooperation projects and work to develop our cultural and humanitarian ties are based on the plan that we drew up for the period through to 2012, and on the control lists that are set for each year. We think this approach provides a solid basis for our work, and most importantly, it is a good working document that enables us to address the widest range of tasks.
We have concluded important agreements in a number of areas. I want to note in particular the fuel and energy sector, in which agreements have just been signed. Our cooperation in this field has already resulted in 175 million barrels of oil and brought more than $7 billion into the Russian budget over this time. These are good results. We hope to continue our cooperation with our Vietnamese colleagues in this area.
We also have plans to continue joint prospecting for fossil fuels in Vietnam, Russia, and third countries, and this is something the President and I discussed today. The agreements that Gazprom, Zarubezhneft, and Zarubezhneftegaz just signed with PetroVietnam, and a number of documents that have been drawn up, concern precisely this area. Our plans include the construction of new energy facilities and modernisation of existing facilities in Vietnam.
We discussed the outlook for our joint projects in the mining industry (an agreement in this area has just been signed), in machine-building, metallurgy, the agribusiness sector, transport, communications, high technology, and the banking sector. Incidentally, it would be very useful for our countries to move over to using our national currencies in our trade settlements. This would be a useful step and in some financial situations it is simply essential. Conducting our settlements using the rouble and the dong is something we should consider in the future, when signing new agreements and setting our cooperation priorities.
Relations between our countries are not limited to economic contacts. On the contrary, the history of our relations contains many different facets. Of course, we need to look to the future. This is why the agreements signed today, in particular the agreement on cooperation in the field of mass communications, represent a step forward. This agreement was signed just now between ITAR-TASS and the Vietnamese Information Agency. Our peoples want to learn more about each other and will be able to receive information from qualified sources.
It is also clear that we need to develop our cooperation in culture, science and education. We agreed that as well as continuing our existing educational contacts, recognising each other’s diplomas and pursuing the mass of other projects we have in this area, we will also look at organising a branch of a Russian university in Vietnam to give our friends the direct opportunity to train high-class specialists. These kinds of ties between Russia (the Soviet Union formerly) and Vietnam have existed for decades now.
The President and I also discussed international cooperation in a wide range of areas. We agree that we share common positions on a great many issues. We need to do all we can to make the world safer and more multi-polar than it is today. We will work together on this. We are ready to work together to respond to these global threats and challenges through the United Nations, in the regional forums in which Russia and Vietnam have significant participation (the APEC and ARF forums) and also through the partnership between the Russian Federation and the ASEAN countries.
In conclusion, I want to say once again that the talks and the atmosphere in which they took place, the atmosphere of friendship and trust that bind our peoples, confirmed that our relations have a very bright future.
It gives me pleasure to welcome once again our colleague, President of Vietnam Nguyen Minh Triet, and I hope that his time in the Russian Federation will be useful and very productive.
President of Vietnam Nguyen Minh Triet: President Medvedev, ladies and gentlemen, dear friends,
The Vietnamese delegation and I have come to Russia at President Medvedev’s invitation. I would like to thank you, Mr President, for the very warm welcome we have received. The purpose of my visit is to strengthen the ties between Vietnam and Russia.
During our talks we exchanged information on development in Vietnam and Russia and discussed cooperation issues. In particular, we discussed concrete measures for expanding our cooperation.
I fully agree with what you just said, Mr President, and I will not repeat these words. Vietnam and the Vietnamese people are very pleased to see Russia’s development of late. Vietnam and the Vietnamese people are also very pleased to see the development of cooperation between our countries of late. We hope to take this cooperation to a new level.
I spoke about three issues in particular during our talks.
First, Vietnam and the Vietnamese people have expressed their gratitude to the Russian people and leadership on many occasions for the immense help you have given Vietnam in its struggle against aggression and the work to build our country. We are also grateful to Russia for continuing to support us in the construction of our country. You have given us great, selfless and effective assistance. The Vietnamese people – today’s generation and generations to come – will always remember and treasure this invaluable help.
Second, it is Vietnam’s constant desire to see Russia a developed country and one of the world’s great powers. Russia’s development brings joy not only to the Russian people but to the people of Vietnam too.
Third, Vietnam wants to develop relations and cooperation with Russia in all fields.
Our countries share very close political positions on most international and regional issues. Our countries support each other.
Economic cooperation between Russia and Vietnam has been showing strong development of late, but the level of our ties still does not match the level of political trust between us. We will therefore work on facilitating economic cooperation and ensuring favourable conditions for business circles in both countries. Vietnam welcomes Russia’s participation in economic projects in our country and this strengthens Russia’s economic and even more importantly, its political role in our country.
Vietnam also wants to develop cooperation with Russia in areas such as science, technical education, culture, and military-technical cooperation. Our cooperation is based on equality and mutual benefit. But Vietnam hopes that Russia will continue to help our country, which is still in the process of development.
I am very pleased that the questions we raised have received President Medvedev’s approval. I can say that the talks between President Medvedev and I were a success.
I say a great thank you to the Russian people and the President personally.