DEVELOPING THE COMPREHENSIVE COOPERATION BETWEEN VIETNAM, ASEAN AND INDIA FOR PEACE AND PROSPERITY
(Introductory Report International Scientific Conference
“Viet Nam, ASEAN - India Development Cooperation:
Reality and Prospect”, Hanoi, October 29-30, 2015)
Prof. PhD. TA NGOC TAN
Member of the Central Executive Committee
of the Communist Party of Viet Nam
President of Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics
Your Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen!
First and foresmot, I would like to convey my warmest regards to the leaders of the Party and State of Viet Nam, scientists and distinguished guests from India, ASEAN member countries and Viet Nam! I wish you all health and happiness! I wish that the conference will achieve its core goal to strengthen the mutual understanding, and increasingly expand the development cooperation among parties, which helps contribute to maintaining peace and bringing about shared prosperity for Viet Nam, ASEAN, and India as well as peace and shared prosperity in the region and the world!
Your Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, scientists!
The friendship between Viet Nam and India has been established and tested for years, and is growing sustainably. Since 2007, after the two countries established their strategic relationship, the mutual cooperation has become much more practical and expanded in many fields. The two sides have continuously exchanged visits by high-level officials including the visits to India by General Secretary of the Communist Party of Viet Nam, President, National Assembly Chairman, Prime Minister of Viet Nam; and the visits to Viet Nam by Indian President, Vice President, Prime Minister. These visits not only do create foundations and driving forces for the implementations of cooperation agreements, but also further improve the political confidence between the two countries.
Viet Nam and India always highly value their relation and concur to strengthen their strategic partnership and develop mutual comprehensive cooperation in politics, economics, energy, defense, security, culture, education, science technology and others fields.
Viet Nam and India always enhance visit exchanges at all levels through all channels: Party, Government, and National Assembly; intensifying cooperation between ministries, industries, and localities and people exchange; Continuing to effectively develop current cooperation mechanisms such as the Inter-Governmental Committee, Political Consultation, Strategic Dialogue, Defense Policy Dialogue, and cooperation in economics, culture, education, training, science and technology, and energy; well implementing deals inked by both sides.
Viet Nam and India always enhance and intensify the pillar in economics, trade, investment. Enhancement of cooperation in economics is the strategic purpose of bilateral relation; strive to achieve trade turnover of 15 billions of USD in 2020. Viet Nam and India enhance cooperation in defense and security, on the base of current agreement and cooperation mechanisms; increase visit exchanges and dialogues of defense and security policies; India continue to support Viet Nam in credits, training, improve capacity of defense and security; share experiences in security force for United Nation peace, cooperate in multilateral forums such as + ASEAN Defense Minister Meeting (ADMM+), ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF)...
Viet Nam and India reached a high consensus on regional and international matters of common interest on the basis of underlining the importance of maintaining peace, stability, security, safety and maritime and aviation freedom in the East Sea; settling disputes peacefully; not threatening to use force or using force; abiding by international laws, the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC); and supporting the soon building of Code of Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (COC).
Vietnamese and Indian leaders consented to reinforcing cooperation in culture, education, training, science and technology; to signing a cooperation agreement in remote sensing; to effectively organising the Viet Nam – India Friendship Festival once every two years.
From what we have achieved from the reality of cooperation in various fields, nowadays, Viet Nam and ASEAN are determined to enhance the Viet Nam – India relation to a new height, especially when Viet Nam undertake the position as the coordinating country of the ASEAN – India relation from August 2015 to August 2018.
Your Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, scientists!
The ASEAN - India relationship has been standing for long. Right at the beginning of AD, Indian culture has left traces on almost aspects of life in South East Asia. The most typical feature of this cultural interference is occurring peacefully. Mr Narasimaha Rao, former Prime Minister of India, stated: “When objectively assess Asia – Pacific, we must realize a fact that, our civilizations can be found in many countries – states of South East Asia...” Former Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Sing stressed, “With ASEAN countries, we have special relations as well as linkages for long.”
In reality, ASEAN is very important to India in many aspects. In history, there is almost no conflict between India and the Southeast Asia. ASEAN is a cooperative organization lying in a region of important geo-politics to India in integrating with East Asia and the Asia - Pacific. India highly values the ASEAN factor in its foreign policy because this organization is the atomic factor of the process of building the East Asia economic community and is a leading locomotive of multilateral structures in the region. Powerhouses like the United States, Russia, Japan, and China approved this central role of ASEAN.
After India issue Look East policy in 1992, ASEAN - India relation was established. ASEAN was the starting point and always plays the central role of Look East policy. In 1992, ASEAN approved India as a dialogue partner in part and elevated India as full dialogue partner until December 1995, which opened a gateway for India to participate in ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in July 1996, in Jakarta. At the seventh ASEAN Summit in November 2001, in Brunei, ASEAN decided to elevate their relationship with India into summit level. The 1st ASEAN Summit in November 2002 in Phnom Penh, Cambodia decided to organize this Summit annually and always invite leaders of India. In 2012, ASEAN - India held the anniversary of 20 years of the establishment of relations and 10 years of ASEAN – India Summit, and concurred to elevate their relations into strategic partnership.
Until now, ASEAN and India have established 25 mechanisms of cooperation, including 6 mechanisms at Minister-level. Contact mechanisms at Minister Level are in diplomacy, commerce, agriculture, new energy, recycling energy, environment, and tourism. People exchanges also increased. Dialogue and Partnership relation between ASEAN and India are constantly expanding, including mechanisms at all levels such as the Summit, the Post Ministerial Conference (PMC), Consulting between ASEAN Minister in Economics and Indian Minister in Commerce and Industry, Senior Officials Meeting (SOM), Senior Economic Officials Meeting (SEOM), Joint Cooperative Committee (JCC) held annually.
The fine political relation opened a gateway for ASEAN – India cooperation development into one of the most comprehensive, dynamic and fast partners, covering all areas in politics, security, defense, economics, commerce, investment, culture, society, education, training, science and technology, transportation, people exchange.
Over the past 20 years, although Viet Nam – ASEAN – India development cooperation demonstrates quite a lot of breakthroughs, it remains far from the potential of each side.
Therefore, to make this conference obtain high achievements, I kindly request you all to focus on discussing major contents as the followings:
Once again, I would like to express my sincere thanks to scientist, distinguished guests, leaders, managers and entrepreneurs for your presence at this conference! I wish you all, Indian, Vietnamese, and ASEAN, health and happiness! I wish the conference “Viet Nam - ASEAN - India Development Cooperation: Reality and Prospect” great success!