Vietnam and Russia aim to triple bilateral trade by 2020

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, right, and his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc, wave school children before heading for talks behind closed doors in Hanoi, Vietnam, Monday, Nov. 19, 2018. Medvedev is in Vietnam for a two-day visit to boost ties between the two countries. (Hoang Thong Nhat/ Vietnam News Agency via AP)
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, center right, and his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc review an honor guard in Hanoi, Vietnam, Monday, Nov. 19, 2018. Medvedev is in Vietnam for a two-day visit to boost ties between the two countries. (Hoang Thong Nhat/Vietnam News Agency via AP)

HANOI, Vietnam — The prime ministers of Vietnam and Russia agreed Monday to nearly triple their countries' two-way trade to $10 billion by 2020 from $3.55 billion last year.

Speaking to reporters after talks in Hanoi, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said the countries will expand their cooperation in the oil and gas industries and transportation.

"We emphasized that energy companies from Russia and Vietnam have had successful cooperation and we wish that cooperation will continue to be consolidated," Medvedev said through a translator.

Russia currently invests in over a hundred projects in Vietnam worth $990 million, many in oil and gas exploration and exploitation, according to Vietnam's Foreign Ministry.

Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said cooperation in defense and security and other areas has seen positive results.

Russia is Vietnam's main weapons supplier.

Phuc said the two countries will be able to cooperate more effectively through the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union trade deal which took effect in 2016, and will boost bilateral trade to $10 billion by 2020.

Medvedev was scheduled to meet with Vietnamese President Nguyen Phu Trong and National Assembly Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan later Monday before concluding his visit.

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