Narendra Modi in Vietnam: Prime minister completed his visit to Vietnam on Saturday in what was the first bilateral prime ministerial visit from India to the southeast Asian nation in 15 years.
Narendra Modi in Vietnam: Prime minister completed his visit to Vietnam on Saturday in what was the first bilateral prime ministerial visit from India to the southeast Asian nation in 15 years. There he extended a $500 million line of credit to Vietnam to deepen their defence cooperation and signed 12 agreements including a deal to construct offshore patrol boats, amid China’s muscle flexing in the disputed South China Sea and “emerging regional challenges”. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who held wide-ranging talks with his Vietnamese counterpart Nguyen Xuan Phuc here, said the two countries have decided to elevate their strategic ties to a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership to provide it a new momentum.
The 12 agreements were signed in a wide range of areas covering defence, IT, space, cyber security and sharing white shipping information in presence of Modi and Phuc. “The range of agreements signed just a while ago point to the diversity and depth of our cooperation,” he said, adding the agreement on construction of offshore patrol boats is one of the steps to give concrete shape to the bilateral defence engagement. Later in a joint statement, both India and Vietnam also called for “peaceful” resolution of the South China Sea issue and “exercise self-restraint”. They also urged all parties to show “utmost respect” for the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
Here are the key takeaways from the visit:
* The India-Vietnam relationship was upgraded to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership which Hanoi only has with Moscow and Beijing.
* A new defence credit line of $500 million from India was announced.
* Signing of contract for fast offshore patrol vessels by L&T with Vietnam Border Guards under $100 million from the defence credit line given.
* Agreement on cooperation in outer space for peaceful purposes.
* Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cyber security.
* Navy-to-navy agreement on White Shipping information sharing.
* India to assist Vietnam to participate in UN peace keeping
* Grant of $5 million for software park.
* MoU on cooperation in the IT sector.
* MoU on setting up Centre for Excellence in software development.
* Postgraduate and doctoral scholarships for Buddhist and Sanskrit studies in India.
* Protocol on double taxation avoidance agreement.
* MoU for mutual recognition of standards.
* MoU on cooperation in health and medicine.
* MoU between Indian Council for World Affairs and Vietnamese Academy of Social Sciences.
* Protocol on celebration of 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations.
With inputs from PTI