On 18 November 2011, an official ceremony was held at the embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in Moscow to award the Vietnamese Order of Friendship to Alexander Mukhin, advisor to Gazprom International’s Managing Director.
As noted by Pham Xuan Son, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam, who was presenting the award, Mukhin was awarded this high honour for his special services to the strengthening of Russian-Vietnamese relations and his outstanding contribution to the development of the oil-and-gas industry in Vietnam.
Mukhin was at the forefront of post-Soviet Russian-Vietnamese cooperation in the oil-and-gas industry. During his time at Gazprom, he was responsible for the preparation of all existing production-sharing agreements under which Russian-Vietnamese projects were carried out in the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
On the Vietnamese side, the presentation ceremony was also attended by Do Van Hau, President and CEO of the Vietnam Oil-and-Gas Corporation PetroVietnam, Nguyen Tien Dung, vice president, and Chan Ngoc Son, Chief Representative of PetroVietnam in Russia, as well as other authorised persons.
The award ceremony took place during the PetroVietnam delegation’s working visit to Moscow, during which Do Van Hau and Alexey Miller, Gazprom’s Chairman of the Board, discussed the main directions of the collaboration and in particular the possibility for joint development of new blocks on the continental shelf of Vietnam. The Vietnamese delegation also met in Moscow with the leaders of Gazprom International, which carries out Gazprom’s overseas projects in the field of exploration, development and production of gas.
The Order of Friendship of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is awarded to individuals, businesses, organisations and institutions who have rendered great services in providing fraternal assistance to the people of Vietnam in various areas of public, industrial, social, cultural, scientific and other spheres of working activity. This award is the highest Vietnamese state award that can be bestowed upon a foreign citizen. At various times, the Soviet cosmonaut Gherman Titov, the Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov and the famous Russian politician Egor Stroyev have all been holders of the Order of Friendship.