The Hanoitimes - On September 21, the Embassy of India in Hanoi in collaboration with the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences hosted a seminar on "Vietnam - India: Prospects for Prosperity and Partnership Relations on the 70th anniversary of the Independence Day of the Republic of India."
Speaking at the opening of the seminar, Prof. Dr. Nguyen Quang Thuan - President of Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences said that India is one of three comprehensive strategic partners of Vietnam. Vietnam appreciates the great importance to relations with India. On the other hand, India respects the great importance to relations with Vietnam and regards Vietnam as one of the pillars of the "Eastern Action" policy.
Indian Ambassador Parvathaneni Harish (right) and Prof. Dr. Nguyen Quang Thuan - President of Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences .
2017 is an important milestone in the relationship between Vietnam and India, when the two countries celebrate the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, the 10th anniversary of the strategic partnership, and the 25th ASEAN-India partnership. Relations between Vietnam and India have deep roots and many similarities in culture. At the same time, the mutual relationship is enhanced to the comprehensive strategic partner during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Vietnam in 2016 that are important milestones for the potential of cooperation between the two sides.
According to Indian Ambassador Parvathaneni Harish, bilateral trade between India and Vietnam increased from $237 million in 2001-2002 to $10.135 billion in 2016 - 2017, an increase of 4% in 15 years. According to an HSBC report, Vietnam is India's fastest-growing export and import partner in the period 2016 - 2020.
Indian Ambassador Parvathaneni Harish.
For opportunities and challenges in trade relations between Vietnam and India, Assoc. Dr Nguyen Xuan Trung, from the Institute of Indian and Southwestern Studies, VASS, said there is a trade gap in the bilateral relationship between Vietnam and India. According to statistics in recent years, the difference has reached $ 3.5 billion. Over the past 20 years, only a few years, Vietnam's statistics exceeded India's statistics on trade turnover.
The occurrence of this situation is due to, first of all, the difference in statistics when the fiscal year of India differs from that of Vietnam. Secondly, a large amount of Indian beef meat is exported to Vietnam, but is exported immediately to China in the form of temporary import for re-export. These products do not count on imports in Vietnam, but they still count on India's exports. The third are the cultural factors, religion, style, work style, institutional differences, implementation of commitments, the poor initiative of the enterprises...
To further develop Vietnam-India trade relations, experts said that the two sides need to strengthen mutual understanding, promote, introduce themselves to each other, and improve the efficiency of trade promotion and increase trade promotion activities on both sides. It is important to have a bilateral FTA agreement between Vietnam and India.
Agreeing with this point, Indian Ambassador Parvathaneni Harish said that the Indian business community is keen to invest to Vietnam. ASEAN and India have established Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). India is also promoting trade with CLMV countries (Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam). The governments of the two countries are concentrating on making full use of the benefits of these trade agreements. In addition, the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (RCEP) including India and some Southeast Asian countries is in the process of negotiation. In my opinion, these are solid basis for the trade relationship between the two countries for expansion in the future.