(VOV) - Vietnam is a key pillar in India’s Look East policy, and the latter is committed to building closer relations with the former both bilaterally and multilaterally, says Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil.
In an interview granted to Vietnam News Agency in New Delhi on October 13, President Patil said bilateral relations have been strengthened in recent years, notably in the areas of politics, national defence, security, trade, investment, capacity building and mutual assistance.
She noted that the two countries have shared a special friendship for more than 50 years since the ties were first established by late Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru and late Vietnamese President Ho Chi Minh.
She said this relationship stemmed from the two countries’ past common struggle against foreign aggressors for national independence. Both countries have since experienced ups and downs and are firmly moving towards their prosperous development path.
The relationship has been constantly strengthened to match the trend of globalization and integration, said the Indian President.
She confirmed that the current visit to India by President Sang will help boost the bilateral strategic partnership by creating high-level political motivation. Both sides have reached an agreement on several initiatives and are expected to sign key cooperation agreements on agriculture, culture, oil and gas.
She noted that India and Vietnam have worked closely in regional and multilateral forums such as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), the East Asia Summit (EAS), the Asia-Europe Summit (ASEM), the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), as well as the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and the United Nations (UN).
Both countries need to make full use of this close coordination in order to cope with emerging challenges and seize new opportunities, said the Indian president.