India and Vietnam Wednesday signed a Joint Vision Statement on India-Vietnam Defence Partnership towards 2030, “which will significantly enhance the scope and scale of existing defence cooperation”.
The document was signed by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, who is on a three-day tour to Vietnam, and the Southeast nation’s Minister of National Defence General Phan Van Giang in Hanoi.
The two ministers also agreed on the early finalization of the $500 million Defence Line of Credit extended to Vietnam, and the “implementation of the projects shall add substantially to Vietnam’s Defence capabilities” and will also push the government’s vision of “make in India, make for the world’.
They also held “wide-ranging discussions on effective and practical initiatives to further expand bilateral defence engagements and regional and global issues,” a Defence Ministry statement added.
India and Vietnam also inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Mutual Logistics Support.
The ministry said in its statement, “In these times of increasing cooperative engagements between the defence forces of the two countries, this is a major step towards simplifying procedures for mutually beneficial logistic support and is the first such major agreement which Vietnam has signed with any country.”
Rajnath Singh also announced that India will gift two simulators and a monetary grant towards setting up of Language and IT Lab at the Air Force Officers Training School for capacity building of the Vietnamese Armed Forces.
The Defence Ministry said that India and Vietnam “share a Comprehensive Strategic Partnership since 2016 and defence cooperation is a key pillar of this partnership.”
Vietnam, the ministry noted, “is an important partner in India’s Act East policy and the Indo-Pacific vision” and the two countries “share a rich history of civilisational and cultural linkages spanning over 2,000 years.”
The Defence Ministry said, “India and Vietnam continue to have the most trustworthy relations in contemporary times with broader convergence of interests and common concerns.”
“Bilateral defence engagements have expanded over a period of time to include wide-ranging contacts between the two countries, including Defence Policy Dialogues, military to military exchanges, high-level visits, capacity building and training programs, cooperation in UN Peace Keeping, ship visits and bilateral exercises.”
SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES