ASEAN-Russia bilateral trade reached US$13.4 billion in 2015, representing 0.6 per cent of ASEAN’s total trade, placing Russia as the eighth largest trade partner of ASEAN.
At the 5th ASEAN Economic Ministers – Russia Consultation meeting held in Vientiane on Aug 5, the ministers instructed senior economic officials of ASEAN and Russia to further discuss Russia’s proposal to establish an ASEAN-Russia Economic Partnership on Connectivity.
They noted that to move ASEAN-Russia relations towards a strategic partnership for mutual benefits, the leaders had set out possible future directions for economic cooperation between ASEAN and Russia in the areas of trade and investment, finance, e-commerce, transport, energy, agriculture, maritime economics including illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, science and technology, and business cooperation and promotion.
They also noted Russia’s proposal to launch a joint feasibility study of possible free trade areas between ASEAN and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU).
The ministers noted that Russia had already started exploring feasible cooperation with chambers of commerce and businesses in ASEAN member countries such as Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, arising from Russia’s proposed list of 57 joint ventures and business projects, which were presented at the 4th AEM-Russia Consultation.