Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s just-ended official visit to India has helped deepen the two countries’ time-honoured friendship and strategic partnership, affirmed Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Vinh.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi

In an interview granted to the media following the visit, Vinh stated that during the two-day stay from October 27-28, PM Nguyen Tan Dung held talks with his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi, met with President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President and Chairman of the Indian Parliament’s Rayja Sabha (Upper House) Hamid Ansari and Speaker of the Lok Sabha (Lower House) Sumitra Mahajan, and had meetings with leaders of several political parties.

The PM also attended the Vietnam-India Business Forum, visited Gaya city and received Chief Minister of the eastern Indian state of Bihar, Jitan Ram Manjihi.

During the talks and meetings, the two sides agreed to continue developing the bilateral cooperation in the fields of politics, economics, defence, security, science technology, culture and education, Vinh said, adding that Indian leaders reiterated their policy considering Vietnam the most important pillar in their country’s “Look East” and “Act East” policies.

In terms of economics, both agreed that strengthening economic cooperation is a strategic target of bilateral ties, striving for 15 billion USD in two-way trade by 2020. PM Modi announced India’s willingness to provide a credit loan worth 300 million USD for Vietnam to import materials.

In terms of security-defence, the two sides reached a consensus on maintaining regular delegation exchange and information sharing, and coordinate with each other at relevant multilateral forums, including the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting-Plus and the ASEAN Regional Forum.

They also were unanimous in stepping up aviation and maritime links, stressing the need to make full use of direct air routes to promote tourism, trade and investment ties.

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Regarding the East Sea issue, both sides agreed on the importance of ensuring peace, stability, security and freedom of navigation and aviation in the East Sea, as well as solving all disputes peacefully in line with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea.

The India side confirmed its intention to continue collaborating with Vietnam in oil and gas exploration and exploitation at sea and to work with the country and ASEAN in implementing initiatives in order to maintain and ensure peace, stability, cooperation and development in the region.

Vietnam and India issued a joint statement on the outcomes of the visit and signed several important cooperation agreements, the Deputy PM said.

He emphasised that the two sides have demonstrated high mutual trust in both political ties and areas of cooperation, as well as a consensus about regional and international issues of common concern, including the East Sea issue.

“This is an important point in the traditional friendship and the strategic partnership between Vietnam and India,” the Deputy FM said, adding that the visit helps open up more opportunities for the two countries to exploit their potentials and expand cooperation to new aspects, including infrastructure and electricity.

Source: VNA