|Engineers checks equipment of the Russian-Vietnamese oil and gas joint venture Vietsovpetro's Bach Ho Mine. There was a large untapped potential for cooperation between Russia and Viet Nam. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hung
HA NOI (VNS) — Deputy Trade and Industry Minister Nguyen Cam Tu told a business conference here yesterday that there was room for further improvement in bilateral relations between Viet Nam and Russia.
Besides co-operation in various sectors of energy such as oil and gas, coal, electricity and bio-fuel, the business communities of both countries should enhance their co-operation in a wide range of promising sectors such as the machinery and engineering, construction, automotive and shipbuilding industries, as well as agriculture, trade and finance, education and training, said Tu.
Viet Nam, he added, was fast becoming an attractive destination to foreign businesses, including Russian, because of its large population and the Goverment's efforts to perfect the nation's legal framework, market mechanism and infrastructure.
At the conference, Alexei Likhachev, deputy economic development minister of the Russian Federation, confirmed that Russia viewed Viet Nam as an important economic and trade partner and a good base from which Russian businesses could enter the Asia-Pacific region.
Doan Duy Khuong, the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry vice chairman, said bilateral trade has developed rapidly in previous years, reaching an estimated US$4 billion in 2013 and $1.52 billion in the past seven months.
However, these figures have yet to match the potentials of the two nations, Khuong noted, adding that the business community would play a key role in accelerating bilateral economic and trade relations.
The impending signing of the free trade agreement between Viet Nam and the Customs Union of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan will create a breakthrough and help the two countries achieve the goal of raising bilateral trade to $7 billion in 2015 and $10 billion in 2020, Khuong remarked.
Vitor Ermakov, general director of the Russian Agency for Small and Medium Business Support, told Viet Nam News that insufficient information about business opportunities in Russia remained the biggest challenge of Vietnamese small and medium enterprises, which lacked the financial capability to do surveys on foreign markets and sell their products there.
The director vowed that his agency would continue to provide Vietnamese exporters with free assistance in seeking partners and promoting the export of their goods to the Russian market. — VNS