Russia plays important role to ASEAN and regional cooperation: Vietnamese diplomat

Friday, 2021-06-04 09:12:39
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2021 marks the 30th anniversary of Russia-ASEAN ties and the 25th anniversary of dialogue partnership between the two sides.
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NDO – Chargé d'Affaires at the Vietnamese Embassy in Russia Nguyen Quynh Mai has highlighted the serious and extensive impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on ASEAN member countries and Russia, while hailing Russia’s important role to ASEAN and cooperation in the region.

The Vietnamese diplomat made the remark during an online international workshop themed “Post-COVID-19 recovery priorities with ASEAN member states: New prospects for cooperation with Russia”, which was held in Moscow on June 3 by the Centre for Russian Strategy under the Institute of Economics in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS).

Mai hailed the theme of the workshop as being of special concern and great significance to ASEAN in general and Vietnam in particular, especially when 2021 marks the 30th anniversary of Russia-ASEAN ties and the 25th anniversary of dialogue partnership between the two sides.

She expressed her belief that Russia will continue to actively participate in cooperation mechanisms with ASEAN, whilst further strengthening relations between ASEAN economies and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU).

ASEAN and Russia should work together in the provision of COVID-19 vaccines to serve the people of ASEAN countries, Mai stated.

At the workshop, which gathered nearly 30 scholars from Russia, Vietnam and the Philippines, 10 presentations were delivered, assessing the situation and touching upon aspects with the aim to step up cooperation and deepen economic Russia-ASEAN ties.

Pavel Kalmychek, Deputy Director of Multilateral Cooperation and Special Projects Department, Ministry of Economic Development of Russia, said the priorities of Russia’s cooperation with ASEAN include: expanding the supply of industrial, agricultural and pharmaceutical products; increasing the export of medical, educational, technical, transport and logistics services; joint investment projects in agriculture, infrastructure, digital economy and energy; access to the exploration and exploitation of natural resources and mineral resources; and multilateral cooperation with ASEAN within the framework of the Russia-ASEAN Dialogue Partnership.

In her presentation, Elena Burova, a researcher at the Centre for Vietnam and ASEAN Studies at the Far East Institute (RAS), stated that as long as the people of ASEAN countries have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 the socio-economic development will continue to face many difficulties and it will be difficult to develop bilateral relations with Russia. Therefore, Russia’s COVID-19 vaccine could be of great significance to ASEAN member states.

Addressing the event, Nguyen Thi Bich Ngoc, Director of the Institute of Regional Studies under the Institute of Strategic Studies at the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, affirmed that Russia and ASEAN have great potential for cooperation specifically in the fields of health (vaccine, medical supplies), food & agriculture (food security and safety, high-tech agriculture), energy (oil & gas, renewable energy), trade (FTA between the EAEU and ASEAN countries), digital transformation, transport, and sustainable development.