‘Vietnam is a key pillar of India’s Act East Policy’: MoS Muraleedharan
India is committed to promote peace, stability and prosperity of the shared region between the countries
Vietnam is a key pillar of India’s Act East Policy and its Indo-Pacific vision, India’s Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said while addressing the VIISAS-ICWA International Webinar on ‘New Horizons in India-Vietnam Relations,’ on October 7.
The Minister said, “In its present form AITIGA does not reflect today’s economic realities and is unable to meet India’s expectations. India hopes that Vietnam as the Chair of ASEAN can help in launching the review of AITIGA at the earliest. We believe that this step will create new opportunities for taking forward our trade engagement in the ASEAN region.”
He later took to twitter and wrote, “Called for upgrade of #ASEAN-India Trade in Goods Agreement for broadening bilateral trade with #ASEAN and Vietnam. Urged industry to work together to utilise new opportunities presented by #COVID19.
“This is the right time for our businesses and investors to work together for utilising the new opportunities being presented by COVID-19. As global trade and commerce repositions in the changed context, both our countries can work together to explore new supply chains and new partnerships with each other,” he said.
India, he said, is committed to promote peace, stability and prosperity of the shared region between the countries.
“We are happy that ASEAN countries, including Vietnam, have come up with their own Outlook on the Indo-Pacific, which is broadly similar to India’s Indo-Pacific Vision. Together, they provide a useful roadmap to promote regional integration through connectivity and collaboration.”
Tweeting about it later, he said, “Glad to speak on ‘new Horizons in #India - #Vietnam Relations’ @ international webinar organised by #ICWA - #VIISAS. Vietnam is a key pillar of India’s #ActEastPolicy & #IndoPacific vision.”
V Muraleedharan cheered the Indo-Vietnam relationship and their joint efforts to sustain world peace. He expressed his pleasure to join Vietnam as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) next year in January.
He said, “With their voices of moderation and inclusivity, respect for international law and commitment to reformed multilateralism, the concurrent presence of India and Vietnam in the Security Council provides a robust basis for a more meaningful cooperation between them on global issues.”
India and Vietnam are committed towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals and addressing Climate Change, he said. Muraleedharan said that Vietnam successfully leading ASEAN despite the COVID-19 pandemic India and Vietnam have further strengthened their relationship and India’s ties with ASEAN has become even stronger.
“Our development partnership with Vietnam has been steadily growing. In addition to the capacity building exchanges for managing COVID-19, our partnership has entered new domains including science and technology, space applications, information and communications technology, physical and digital connectivity, civil nuclear energy, water resources development and so on,” he said.
He later wrote on twitter, “Recalled the successful leadership of as #ASEAN Chair during pandemic. Concurrent presence in #UNSC presents another opportunity for strengthening our multilateral cooperation.”
The minister also underlined some key points highlighting the Indo-Vietnam relationship and efforts made by both nations to continue it. India, he said, has announced to implement seven Quick Impact Projects in Vietnam for water resource management in the Mekong Delta Region whereas five Quick Impact Projects in the field of educational infrastructure have also been agreed upon.
Not just that, both nations have been working on defence and security cooperation. The bilateral engagements in defence partnerships include military exercises, training, joint exercises, UN peacekeeping and ship visits and much more.
India has also extended its defence Lines of Credit worth US $600 million towards developing domestic defence manufacturing in Vietnam, he said.
According to the government’s data, India and Vietnam also enjoy a great relationship as far as bilateral trade is concerned. Last year, India ranked as the 7th largest trading partner, 7th largest source of import and 9th largest export market globally of Vietnam with bilateral trade of around US $12 billion.
India’s investments in Vietnam are estimated to be around US $1.9 billion with several projects running in Vietnam. On the other hand, Vietnam shas six investment projects in India worth US $28.55 million in areas like pharmaceuticals, technology and building materials. Vietnam also happens to be one of the biggest tourist attractions for Indians tourists and short-term visitors.