Recommitting to a closer India-Việt Nam partnership

August, 15/2022 - 09:54
On Indian Independence Day, ambassador Pranay Verma wrote to Việt Nam News

On Indian Independence Day, ambassador Pranay Verma writes for Việt Nam News.

Today, on August 15, India celebrates the 75th anniversary of its Independence Day. It was on this day in 1947 that the people of India won freedom from colonial rule.

India’s independence also inspired freedom movements across many nations in Asia and Africa. In the 75 years since then, India has made a remarkable journey from the throes of impoverishment to become a modern, prosperous nation governed by the world’s most elaborate constitution and supported by robust institutions.

Today, India is among the five largest economies in the world. Its capabilities in emerging technologies, innovation and R&D are globally acknowledged. The transformation to a “New India” envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not just about economic growth. It is about good governance, people’s empowerment through technology, and an inclusive and sustainable development model.

The scale of this transformation is creating capabilities and generating demands that offer great opportunities for our partners, including Việt Nam.

Students of Vĩnh Yên Secondary School with ambassador Pranay Verma during an event to mark the 75th Anniversary of India’s Independence in Vĩnh Phúc province in June 2022. Photo Courtesy of the embassy

Prime Minister Modi has envisioned a “self-reliant India” or Aatma Nirbhar Bhaarat – which is self-sustaining and resilient, not by isolating India from the world but by enhancing India’s capacities at home that can help in meeting global needs.

With its size, capability and ambition, India today is an important contributor to the post-pandemic global economic revival while offering solutions to shared challenges such as pandemics and climate change.

As India celebrates the 75th anniversary of its Independence, India and Việt Nam have reached another important milestone – the 50th anniversary of their diplomatic relations. It is an occasion for us to cherish our close friendship and reaffirm our commitment to take this special relationship to newer heights.

As I complete my tenure as the Ambassador of India to Việt Nam, I look back with satisfaction at the many forward strides our relations have taken in the last three years.

Despite the disruptions caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, our Comprehensive Strategic Partnership has been constantly enriched by frequent high-level exchanges, deeper economic and development partnerships, increasingly robust defence and security cooperation, and growing cultural and people-to-people contacts.

Our mutual assistance in the fight against the pandemic showcased our long tradition of showing support and empathy to each other during difficult times.

Today, Việt Nam is an indispensable part of India’s regional and global worldview. It is a key pillar of India’s Look East Policy and Indo-Pacific Vision.

The Joint Vision for Peace, Prosperity and People adopted by our Prime Ministers during their Virtual Summit in December 2020 provides the blueprint for the future development of our multifaceted partnership.

Our businesses and industries are looking at opportunities in each other’s countries with greater expectations as they explore new supply chains based on trust and transparency. In 2021, despite the difficulties posed by COVID-19, our bilateral trade crossed the US$14 billion mark for the first time.

Our Development Partnership with Quick Impact Projects is creating community infrastructure benefiting local communities in more than 30 provinces of Việt Nam and contributing to Việt Nam’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Our cultural exchanges have achieved new levels built upon our shared Buddhist heritage and practical cooperation, such as archaeological conservation projects in Việt Nam.

Our people-to-people and tourism exchanges are growing rapidly with new direct flight connectivity between most major cities of India and Việt Nam. The popularity of yoga across the length and breadth of Việt Nam is building new bridges between our societies.

"Aarti" - a ritual of offering prayers to the Ganges River performed at dusk on the Ghats in Varanasi. Photo Courtesy of Incredible India

India and Việt Nam, two aspirational societies with youthful demography, are increasingly driven today by the promise of new technologies, innovation, and digitisation to deliver economic growth and people’s empowerment.

With India striving to become a US$5 trillion economy soon and Việt Nam aiming at realising the vision of becoming an upper-middle-income country with modern industry by 2030, we have immense opportunities to deepen our cooperation further.

As we celebrate the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence Day today, we also recommit ourselves to working ever closer with Việt Nam, as one of our closest friends and most trusted partners, to further strengthen our Comprehensive Strategic Partnership aligned with our global visions and national development priorities. VNS