In line with New Delhi’s ‘Act East Policy’, economic and defence relations will be the focus of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Vietnam next month on his way to China for the G-20 summit from September 4 to 5.
Though an official announcement regarding Narendra Modi’s stopover in Vietnam for a bilateral visit is yet to be made, the Vietnamese ambassador to India, Ton Sinh Thanh, told a select group of journalists at Foreign Correspondents Club, New Delhi, that, “Prime Minister Modi will stop over in Hanoi for bilateral talks and the visit is taking place after 15 years, coinciding with 10 years of ‘Strategic Partnership’ between the two countries.”
Seeking more investments from the Indian industry, the envoy said, “Indian investors have a major opportunity because Vietnam has become a member of the ASEAN Economic Community and signed a number of important free-trade agreements, especially the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. With these documents, Indian enterprises which invest in Vietnam and export to other countries can enjoy a tariff of 0%.”
“The Vietnam-India Strategic Partnership has been strengthened in recent years, facilitating economic co-operation between the two countries. India’s investment in Vietnam has increased sharply with last year’s capital fetching $570 million, ranking India 28th out of 110 investors in Vietnam,” the ambassador said.
He highlighted the expanding Indian investment in Vietnam and sought investments in sectors such as oil and gas, textiles, parts supply industries, pharmaceuticals, food processing, IT, infrastructure development and renewable energy. With Vietnam participating in 12 free-trade agreements (FTAs), the country has become a major gateway to exports into many large markets such as US, Japan and the EU, said the envoy.