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Wednesday, 19 June 2013 15:58
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The unchangeable sympathy and friendship between Russian and Vietnamese people

On 14th November 2012, in the framework of the working visit to Vietnam, Her Excellency, Madame V.I Matviyenko, Chairperson of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation and the delegation of the Council had a meeting with lecturers and learners of the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration. At the meeting, Madame V.I Matviyenko made an important speech. The Political Theory Review is honored to introduce the full speech. (Titled by the Editorial Board)

Vietnam national oil and gas group exploiting oil in the South China Sea _ Photo: TL

Distinguished Professor, Doctor Ta Ngoc Tan, Member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam, President of the Academy!

My colleagues!

Ladies and gentlemen!

I would like to express my sincere thanks to you for inviting me to visit the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration. It’s a great honor for me to make a speech at such a prestigious and highly respectable educational institution.

Although not directly acquainted with the Academy, I have already known about it’s a ctivities of this Academy. With its help, two years ago, the Ho Chi Minh Institute was inaugurated at the National University of Saint Petersburg, my native city. The Institute is the first international educational and scientific center not only in Russia but also in the world specializing in research on the history and culture of Vietnam. The emergence of such an institute is a typical evidence of the special, trustworthy relation between Russia and Vietnam. There are not many countries in the world that would have such strong mutual attachment based on decades’ friendship.

Your Academy is named after President Ho Chi Minh, the great son of the Vietnamese nation, who initiated this friendship. President Ho Chi Minh made tremendous contributions to develop the relationship between the countries and the two peoples. In 1950, Ho Chi Minh as President of independent Vietnam sent a letter to the leaders of our country to propose the establishment of diplomatic relations.

Our friendship was forged in an uneasy era full of complicated developments. The Soviet Union people accorded wholehearted and enthusiastic support to the heroic struggle of the Vietnamese people for national independence. I still remember how we welcomed your victory at that time, how happy we were when your people gained complete freedom. We welcomed Vietnamese friends as national heroes.

Afterwards, during the complicated postwar period, our country gave Vietnamese people support and assistance. With the direct participation of the Soviet Union, hundreds of factories and production construction projects were built, which became the foundation for the economy of a new socialist Vietnam.

We are proud that Vietnamese experts, who graduated from the universities in the Soviet Union and Russia, now become successful in business and production, or hold key positions in the State apparatus.

Vietnam is one of the countries ranking first in the number of experts trained in the higher education institutions of the Soviet Union and Russia. More than 50 thousands of Vietnamese citizens were trained in our country. At present, more than 6,000 Vietnamese people are studying in Russia, in which 2,000 have won scholarships of the Russian Government. Certainly, we should further expand our cooperation in education to meet the increasing need of Vietnam for highly-qualified experts.

In my opinion, as more Russian people study in Vietnam, our country could get more benefit. I am sure that, in the future, the Ho Chi Minh Institute in Saint Petersburg will play an outstanding role in pushing up the exchanges and contacts among higher education institutions of the two countries.

In Russia, the people sincerely treasure great experiences drawn from the successful cooperation with Vietnam, and highly appreciate the courage and hardworking spirit of the Vietnamese people. An importance for us is that in Vietnam, the people also show warm affection to the people and country of Russia, and I have a strong feeling of this during my visit to your country.

I would like to repeat the statement of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who repeatedly stressed that “Vietnam is our strategic and trustworthy friend”, “One of the priorities in Russia’s foreign policy is to further deepen and widen joint actions with Vietnam”.

Nowadays, the Russia - Vietnam relation are developing dynamically, which can be seen clearly in the active political dialogue at the highest national level. In the recent half-year, Vietnamese President and Russian President had two meetings: in July, the two Heads of State met for a talk at Sochi, and in September, they had a ‘marginal’ meeting at the APEC Summit in Russia. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev also has just made an official visit to Vietnam.

As representative of the legislative body, I would like to acknowledge that the inter-parliamentary coordinated activity is being further deepened and widened. The leaders of the two parliaments have established relations effectively, the committees and specialized sub-committees are maintaining exchanges and contact.

Today, we will sign a new cooperation agreement between the Federation Council of the Russian Federation and the National Assembly of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. I believe that this agreement will open great prospects for the shared activities of our two legislative bodies.

Russia and Vietnam are effectively coordinating actions within the framework of international inter-parliamentary forums, firstly the Parliamentary Alliance, ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA). The Asia - Pacific Parliamentary Forum is an important playground for the constructive cooperation between our countries. Notably, its 21st annual meeting will be held in next January in Vladivostok.

Our two countries share the close or the same points of view on core issues in the international agenda. Russia and Vietnam support the multi-polar principle in international relations. Our two countries clearly realize that it is necessary to ensure the strategic security and the balance of national interests of countries.

As the Chairperson of the Federation

Council - a Chamber representing localities, I am especially gladto acknowledge that the coordinated actions between our two countries at grassroots level are being strengthened.

Many Russian cities and local are maintaining steady relationship with Vietnam, including Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Primorie Province, the Republic of Tatarstan, Nizhegorod and Yaroslavl Provinces. In Vietnam, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang and Quang Nam also make particularly enthusiastic efforts in this regard. The construction project of Hanoi Cultural - Commercial Center in Moscow is a remarkable example of the real outcome of locality linkages.

The positive trends are also coming into being in economic cooperation. According to the statistics of the first six months of 2012, the trade turnover between Russia and Vietnam reached more than US$ 1.5 billion; the growth rate of good exchanges exceeded by 30% compared to the corresponding indicator of last year. This data is very impressive.

The rapid growth of trade turnover requires us to develop of new form of connection. At present, the two countries are holding consultation on the establishment of a free trade area on the foundation of the Customs Alliance of Russia, Kazakhstan and Belarus. I assume that it is a very promising project.

Russia and Vietnam are having an active cooperation in energy, oil and gas, mining, machinery manufacturing, chemicals and food industries. A strategically important project is the construction project of Vietnam’s first nuclear power plant scheduled to begin in 2014. Russia is the owner of unique technologies in the nuclear energy field and has accumulated abundant experience in such a kind of construction. I believe that the development of nuclear energy in Vietnam will exert positive impacts on your national economy.

I would like to add that currently, Russian companies are carrying out dozens of projects in Vietnam with the total investment of over US$ 900 million in various economic sectors, not counting the investments in oil and gas. Meanwhile, Vietnam’s investment in the non-raw material sector of Russia has reached nearly US$ 80 million.

We understand that Russia has to take more actions to increase its attractiveness in investment and improve its business environment. This task is listed by Russian President among the priorities for the coming years. In this regard, we can learn a lot from Vietnamese friends. And we are also studying your experience.

Vietnam’s achievements in the modernization of the economy and in the building of the State are truly impressive. Yours is now a country among those ranking first in growth rates in the booming region of Asia - Pacific.

Vietnam is rapidly changing, which can be seen clearly in Hanoi. New high buildings and skyscrapers are “popping up”, and new modern roads and traffic hubs re also being built.

I would like to stress that the Russian Federation will try its best to promote the successful development of your country in all aspects, including society, economy and foreign affairs. That is the main content in our policy line towards the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Today, our two countries share many similar tasks, which are, first and foremost, related to the modernization and speeding up of the economy and the perfection of the State management system.

In Russia, in recent years, wide range of important reforms has been launched, first in the political system. They are aimed at renovating the institutions of the state and developing a civil society, minimalizing administrative barriers in every field of life. Among the most important tasks, first and foremost, I want to mention the law on the election of local high-raking officials, which was approved by the Federation Council in the spring of this year. We studied and devised an open, “transparent” mechanism in recruiting candidates to the local leaderships; the influence of local governments and social forces on this process has been intensified clearly.

On 14th October 2012, most of localities in Russia held local elections according to the new stipulations. Five subjects of the Federation elected heads of localities according the new Law. In the elections, a serious political race took place. At present, we are making an analysis of how the criteria and regulations are working.

One of the key political tasks put forth by Russian President is the decentralization of power, and re-division of authority among various governmental levels. That is a timely task. Russia is a large country, so it can’t be managed effectively from a center. I say this as an experienced governor.

The Federation Council is attentively attending to the follow up to ensure that the process of power should be linked to the re-standardizing of inter-budget relations, and the expansion of income foundation of localities and City Halls.

The laws have come into effect thanks to the political initiatives with a view to democratizing the election process, the encouragement of party building, and the consolidation of the system of courts.

By the way, the Federation Council itself is also experiencing a period of strong reform, which has been simultaneously launched by the Federation Council and is supported by the State President.

In the Bill on “The order of reform of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation” proposed by the Head of State, a new sketch in principle is put forth for reforming our Federation Council. This sketch is based on the expansion of the citizens’ capability to exert influence on the reform and operation of the Federation Council. This law mainly ensures that members of the upper house are given power on the basis of directly expressing the will of citizens during local elections, and protecting members of the Federation Council in face of groundless remarks.

By doing so, we are trying to increase the operation efficiency of the members of the Federation Council, and to strengthen its role in the political system of the country.

My distinguished colleagues!

Whatever the political and economic changes we may experience, one thing remains unchanged: that is the mutual sincere sympathy and friendship between the Russian and Vietnamese peoples. The last decades have proved that the close relationship between Russia and Vietnam will be always maintained, regardless of changes of the political situation.

Whatever the political and economic changes we may experience, one thing remains unchanged: that is the mutual sincere sympathy and friendship between the Russian and Vietnamese peoples. The last decades have proved that the close relationship between Russia and Vietnam will be always maintained, regardless of changes of the political situation. A Vietnamese saying goes: “A day of travel gives us a basketful of wisdom”. With mutual assistance, our two countries have covered a great distance and gained numerous achievements. And now, our mission is to pass the flag of relay race on to the new generations, after opening new horizons and new cooperative opportunities for them. I believe that the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Public Administration, with its activities, will effectively serve that objective. I would like to wish for all lecturers and learners of the Academy to gain many achievements in your work and have more new education and research projects.

Thank you!

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