MOSCOW, March 25 (Xinhua) -- The Russian Navy will help Vietnam build a submarine base, Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov said Thursday.
Russia and Vietnam have bright prospects of bilateral military and technical cooperation, he said, as "Vietnam needs a submarine base and the Russian Navy will provide help."
Vietnam also invited Russia to take part in the construction of a ship repair plant, which may later service Russian warships, said Serdyukov, who recently paid an official visit to Vietnam and held talks with his Vietnamese counterpart Phung Quang Thanh during the trip.
"They (Vietnam) will also need rescue and auxiliary vessels," he added.
He claimed Russia is ready to help Vietnam build naval aviation, as soon as the Vietnamese military solved its financial problems.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, Vietnam's arms orders to Russia steadily increased in the past two years. In 2008, the total value of the two countries' arms contracts exceeded 1 billion U.S. dollars at the first time. The number reached 3.5 billion U.S. dollars in 2009 and has already surpassed 1 billion in the first quarter of this year.