|Chairwoman of the National Assembly Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan (left) and Chairwoman of the Russian Federation Council Valentina Matviyenko. (Photo: VNA)
Welcoming Ngan, Matviyenko said the visit will contribute to strengthening ties between the two legislatory bodies as well as the two countries.
NA Chairman Ngan, for her part, said Vietnam always treasures the relations with Russia
which is of primary importance to its foreign policy. Vietnam wants to foster a deeper, more effective and comprehensive cooperation with Russia to bring benefits to both sides, she said.
Vietnam and Russia share common views in many regional and global issues, she continued, and have been maintaining great coordination and support for each other at multilateral forums, particularly the United Nations. She thanked Russia for backing Vietnam’s candidacy for a non-permanent seat of the UN Security Council from 2020 – 2021.
The Vietnamese top legislator was delight to talk about the two countries’ cooperation in economics, trade and investment which has seen progress since the Vietnam-EAEU Free Trade Agreement went into force in October, 2016. Last year, the Vietnam-Russia trade surged 30 percent from a year earlier to 4.5 billion USD. In the first three quarter of 2019, the two-way trade reached 3.4 billion USD.
However, there is plenty of room for expanding partnership in economics, trade and investment between the two sides, she said.
She suggested the two parliamentaries will urge competent authorities of both countries to provide broader market access to each other’s agricultural and fishery products alongside other export items.
Ngan also spoke highly of the two nations’ partnership in energy, of which oil and gas is the main pillar, while saying she is pleased to see cooperation in defence, security and military technology, education and training, science and technology, culture, and tourism between the two sides flourishing.
The two leaders shared delight at the booming in tourism cooperation between the two countries in recent years with a record number of Russian tourist arrivals to Vietnam last year which exceeded 600,000, making Russia Vietnam’s largest source of foreign visitors.
Meanwhile, Vietnamese visitors to Russia are estimated to grow by 20 percent to about 54,000 this year.
Ngan later took the occasion to thank Russia for supporting the Vietnamese community in Russia and asked her host to facilitate issuing visas for Vietnamese citizens and fishermen to Russia while the two countries are negotiating a travel agreement.
The Vietnamese top legislator lauded the mutual support and close coordination between legislative bodies of the two countries on the international arena, as well as their active participation in multilateral forums they hosted.
As Chair of the 41st General Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA 41), the Vietnamese NA will work to promote the ASEAN-Russia strategic partnership, she said.
She took the occasion to invite Matviyenko and other deputies of the Russian Federation Council to visit Vietnam and attend AIPA 41 slated for late August and early September 2020 in Ha Long city, the northern province of Quang Ninh.
Ngan noted with pleasure the continuously enhanced collaboration between Vietnamese and Russian localities such as Hanoi-Moscow, Ho Chi Minh City-Saint Petersburg, Binh Thuan-Kaluga, Ha Tinh-Tula, and Nam Dinh-Krasnodar.
She suggested Matvienko support the Republic of Tatarstan to set up twinning relationship with Vietnam’s Mekong Delta province of Kien Giang, and urged the Russian Federation Council to continue working as a bridge connecting localities of the two countries.
The NA Chairwoman briefed her host on the socio-economic situation in Vietnam in recent times. Regarding the East Sea issue, she stressed Vietnam highly appreciates Russia’s stance on supporting the settlement of disputes by peaceful measures on the basis of international law, firstly the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982 UNCLOS), contributing to maintaining peace, stability, freedom, safety and security of navigation and aviation in the East Sea, and backing the full and serious implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), towards the early completion of a Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).
For her part, Matviyenko highlighted the role of Vietnamese and Russian friendship parliamentarians’ groups, and called on the groups to sign more biennial cooperation agreements and join hands in supervising the realisation of inked deals.
The Russian Federation Council hopes for more exchanges of young parliamentarians and effective coordination between the two legislative bodies at regional and international parliamentary forums in the time ahead, she said.
Vietnam’s non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council in 2020 will create an opportunity for both sides to coordinate in the international arena, the host leader said.
The Russian Federation Council will send a delegation to the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum in Australia in January 2020, she said, expressing her hope that the two sides will coordinate within the mechanism.
Matviyenko also proposed organising the first meeting between the committees for external affairs of the two legislatures.
She invited NA Chairwoman Ngan to attend the third Eurasian Women’s Forum scheduled for 2021 in Russia.
Talking about partnerships between localities, Matviyenko introduced the Siberia region – the centre of Russia, saying the country aims to attract foreign investors in the region.
She said as Vietnam and Russia are negotiating an inter-governmental agreement on organised recruitment of Vietnamese citizens to work in Russia, and appealed to the two legislatures to provide legal assistance during the signing, ratification and enforcement of the document./