Putin’s Vietnam Visit: Strengthening Historical Ties and Building Future Plans

Russian President Vladimir Putin has traveled to Vietnam, leading a high-level delegation and signing twelve strategic partnership and cooperation agreements.

The trip followed Putin’s state visit to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, where a comprehensive new partnership treaty was signed with Kim Jong-un’s government in Pyongyang.

Putin met with his Vietnamese counterpart To Lam, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh, parliament speaker Tran Thanh Man, and the general secretary of the Vietnamese Communist Party, Nguyen Phu Trong. The primary focus of the meetings in Hanoi was on economic partnerships, trade, and scientific and technical cooperation.

Red carpet in Hanoi

The Vietnamese delegation greeted Putin with a red carpet and a guard of honor as he arrived at Hanoi’s Noi Bai international airport at 2am local time on Wednesday.

Deputy Foreign Minister Le Thi Thu Hang and Le Hoai Trung, secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam and head of its Commission for External Relations, were among the officials who welcomed the Russian president.

On Thursday, Putin paid his respects at the President Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum in Hanoi and the Memorial to Fallen Heroes, established in 1994 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Vietnamese victory over French colonial occupation.

He also extended an invitation to President Lam to attend the 2025 Victory Day celebrations in Moscow.

Nhan Dan article

Prior to his visit to the Southeast Asian country, Putin wrote an for Nhan Dan, the official newspaper of the Communist Party of Vietnam, outlining the agenda for his meetings with the Vietnamese leadership in Hanoi, particularly emphasizing the goal of boosting investments and mutual trade.

“[Russian] food, mineral resources, machinery and equipment are exported to Vietnam. Many Vietnamese goods, including clothing, fruits, vegetables and other agricultural products, are in demand on the Russian market,” he wrote.

Putin also reminded the Vietnamese of the support they received from the Soviet Union in “their heroic struggle against the French, and then the American invaders,” and to rebuild Vietnam afterward.

The Joint Statement

According to the joint communique issued in Hanoi, Russia and Vietnam agreed to strengthen their bilateral interaction and establish new mechanisms for cooperation. 

Moscow expressed its appreciation for Vietnam’s “balanced and objective stance on the Ukraine crisis,” while Vietnam declared its support for Russia’s fight against terrorism.

The two countries advocated for the creation of an independent Palestinian state, opposed the deployment of weapons in space, and endorsed the strengthening of the role of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) in regional interstate relations. 

At the Hanoi Opera House

On Thursday, Putin engaged with questions from Vietnamese graduates of Soviet and Russian universities at the Opera House in Hanoi, followed by a gala reception hosted by President Lam.

“I believe that the fight for one’s historical roots, for one’s traditional values ​​is an extremely important aspect for any state, for any country and for any people who want to survive as such and preserve their identity,” the Russian president remarked to his Vietnamese audience.

During the question-and-answer session, Putin addressed a range of topics, including science, technology, space exploration and eye surgeries, as well as music, patriotic upbringing, and tourism.

Agreements and memoranda

During Putin’s visit, Russia and Vietnam signed a total of 15 documents, including eleven agreements aimed at strengthening the “comprehensive strategic partnership” between the two countries. 

According to the Kremlin, the agreements signed encompassed higher education, justice, combating epidemics, nuclear technology, offshore oil exploration, tax policy, customs, and transportation.

Significant attention was given to the project led by Russia’s atomic energy agency Rosatom, to construct a Center for Nuclear Science and Technology in Vietnam over the next three years.