Finland and the United States have signed a bilateral defense cooperation pact pledging closer military collaboration at the time when the Nordic country is increasingly concerned over Russia's activities in the Baltic Sea region.

The deal was signed in Helsinki on Friday by the U.S. Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert O. Work and the Finnish Defense Minister Jussi Niinisto.

While Washington and Helsinki already closely cooperate through joint military drills on air, land and sea, the non-legally binding pact seeks to deepen the ties through information exchange, joint research and development in areas like cyberdefense and training among other things.

Finland's close Nordic neighbor Sweden concluded similar kind of pact with the United States in June.

Non-NATO members Finland and Sweden each struck such a defense cooperation deal also with Britain earlier this year.