About Us Bilateral Relations

Embassy of India
Hanoi

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INDIA-VIETNAM RELATIONS

1.       India and Vietnam, with cultural and civilizational links and historical roots in the common struggle for liberation from colonial rule and the national struggle for independence, share traditionally close and cordial bilateral relations. Mahatma Gandhi and Ho Chi Minh, regarded as the Father of Nation in India and Vietnam respectively, led people in their heroic struggle against colonialism in the two countries. India was the Chairman of the International Commission for Supervision and Control (ICSC), which was formed pursuant to the Geneva Accord of 1954 to facilitate the peace process in Vietnam. India initially maintained Consulate-level relations with the then North and South Vietnams and later established full diplomatic relations with unified Vietnam on 7 January 1972. Relations between the two countries were elevated to the level of "Strategic Partnership" during the visit of Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung to India in July 2007.  In September 2016, during Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s visit to Vietnam, bilateral relations were further elevated to the level of “Comprehensive Strategic Partnership”.

2.      In the context of COVID-related travel limitations, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and Prime Minister Mr. Nguyen Xuan Phuc held the first ever India-Vietnam Virtual Summit on 21 December 2020, during which they adopted a historic “Joint Vision for Peace, Prosperity and People” to guide the future development of bilateral relations. On the sidelines of the Virtual Summit, the two Foreign Ministers also signed a Plan of Action for the period 2021-23 to implement the Joint Vision.

I. POLITICAL EXCHANGES

Recent Meetings/Virtual Interactions

1.

Virtual Summit between Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Vietnam, Mr. Nguyen Xuan Phuc

21 December 2020

First ever Virtual Summit between India and Vietnam

2.

Telephone Call between Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Vietnam, Mr. Pham Minh Chinh

10 July 2021

First virtual Summit interaction after election of new Prime Minister of Vietnam

3.

Meeting between Speaker Lok Sabha, Shri Om Birla and Chairman of National Assembly of Vietnam, Mr. Vuong Dinh Hue

7 September 2021

Meeting held on the sidelines of 5th World Conference of Speakers of Parliament (WCSP5) in Vienna, Austria

4.

Virtual Joint Commission Meeting between External Affairs Minister of India, Dr. S. Jaishankar and Deputy PM and Foreign Minister of Vietnam, Mr. Pham Binh Minh

25 August 2020

Virtual 17th Joint Commission Meeting

5.

Meeting between External Affairs Minister of India, Dr. S, Jaishankar and Foreign Minister of Vietnam, Mr. Bui Thanh Son

21 September 2021

Meeting held on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York

6.

Virtual Bilateral Meeting between Raksha Mantri (Defence Minister) of India Shri Rajnath Singh and Minister of National Defence of Vietnam, General Phan Van Giang

01 July 2021

Part of regular bilateral exchanges at the level of Defence Ministers

Recent Visits from India to Vietnam

1.

Vice President of India
Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu

09-12 May 2019

Official Visit

(To attend the
16th UN Day of Vesak)

2.

President of India
Shri Ram Nath Kovind

18-20 November 2018

State Visit

3.

External Affairs Minister
Smt. Sushma Swaraj

26-28 August 2018

16th Joint Commission Meeting / 3rd Indian Ocean Conference

4.

Prime Minister of India
Shri Narendra Modi

02-03 September 2016

Official Visit

5.

Speaker of Lok Sabha

Smt. Sumitra Mahajan

28 March - 1 April 2015

132nd Assembly of Inter-Parliamentary Union

 

6.

President of India
Shri Pranab Mukherjee

 

14-17 September 2014

State Visit

7.

Vice President of India
Shri Hamid Ansari

14-17 January 2013

Closing ceremony of the India-Vietnam Friendship Year 2012.

Commemoration of 40 years of Diplomatic Relations.

Recent Visits from Vietnam to India

1.

Vice President of Vietnam

Mme. Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh

11-13 February 2020

Official Visit

2.

President of Vietnam

Mr. Tran Dai Quang

02-04 March 2018

State Visit

3.

Prime Minister of Vietnam

Mr. Nguyen Xuan Phuc

24-26 January 2018

To attend ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit-2018 and as Chief Guest for India’s Republic Day 2018

4.

Chairperson of the National Assembly of Vietnam

Mme. Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan

8-11 December 2016

Official Visit leading a Parliamentary Delegation

5.

Prime Minister of Vietnam
Mr. Nguyen Tan Dung

27-28 October 2014 

State Visit

6.

General Secretary of Communist Party of Vietnam

Mr. Nguyen Phu Trong

19-22 November 2013

State Visit

Institutional Mechanisms for Bilateral Exchanges

3.     There are several bilateral mechanisms at different levels between India and Vietnam. The Joint Commission Meeting at the Foreign Ministers' level and the Foreign Office Consultations and Strategic Dialogue at Secretary-level provide the broad framework for bilateral consultations encompassing all areas of mutual interest. The 16th Joint Commission Meeting was held at Hanoi in August 2018. The 10th Foreign Office Consultations and the 7th Strategic Dialogue were held in New Delhi in April 2018. In view of the COVID-19 related travel restrictions, the latest (17th) round of Joint Commission Meeting was held online between External Affairs Minister of India and the Deputy PM and Foreign Minister of Vietnam on 25 August 2020.

4.     India-Vietnam Joint Sub-Commission on Trade at Commerce Secretary-Level held its 4th meeting in Hanoi in January 2019. The 13th Defence Secretary-level Annual Defence Policy Dialogue was held virtually on 12 January 2021. Among other key institutional dialogues, the 2nd India-Vietnam Maritime Security Dialogue was held on virtual platform in April 2021 following the first round held in Hanoi in March 2019. The 1st Policy Planning Dialogue between the two Foreign Ministries were held in September 2020 at the level of Joint Secretary/Director General. Both countries also maintain Parliamentary exchanges.

III.  TRADE AND ECONOMIC COOPERATION

Bilateral Trade

5.      From a meagre US$200 million in the year 2000, bilateral trade between India and Vietnam has seen steady growth over the years. According to Indian statistics, during Financial Year (FY) April 2020 – March 2021, bilateral trade between India and Vietnam reached US$11.12 billion, with Indian exports to Vietnam amounting to US$ 4.99 billion and Indian imports from Vietnam at US$ 6.12 billion. This marked a decrease of 22.47 percent in bilateral trade year-on-year, largely on account of COVID-19 related disruptions. India’s trade deficit with Vietnam reduced from US$ 2.22 billion during FY 2019-2020 to US$ 1.13 billion in FY 2020-2021.

6.      In FY 2020-21, for India, Vietnam was the 15th largest trading partner globally and the 4th largest within ASEAN, following Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia. For Vietnam, on the other hand, India was the 10th largest trading partner globally. During FY 2020-2021, key items of exports from India to Vietnam included iron and steel, cotton, frozen meat, auto component, seafood, electrical machinery and equipment, animal feeds and cereals. Major Indian exports that registered positive growth during this period were cotton, auto component, electrical equipment, animal feed ingredient, cereals and pharmaceutical products. Key items of imports into India from Vietnam during this period were electrical machinery and equipment, chemicals, copper and articles of copper, products of iron and steel and agro-based commodities.

India’s Investments in Vietna

7.      India’s investments in Vietnam are estimated at around US$ 1.9 billion including investments routed through third countries. According to Vietnam’s Foreign Investment Agency, as of April 2021, India has 299 valid projects with total invested capital of US$ 909.5 million, ranking 26th among countries and territories investing in Vietnam. Major sectors of Indian investment are energy, mineral exploration, agro-processing, sugar, tea, coffee manufacturing, agro-chemicals, IT and auto components.

Vietnam’s Investments in India

8.      As of 2020, Vietnam has six investment projects in India with total estimated investment of US$ 28.55 million, primarily in the areas of pharmaceuticals, information technology, chemicals and building materials.

III. DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP

9.      India has a long-standing development partnership with Vietnam that has made positive contributions towards capacity building, Sustainable Development Goals and socio-economic development of Vietnam. India has also been providing assistance to Vietnam within the ASEAN framework.

Quick Impact Projects

10.     Under the Mekong Ganga Cooperation (MGC) framework, India has been taking up Quick Impact Projects (QIPs), each valued at US$50,000, in different provinces of Vietnam for development of community infrastructure. With their short gestation period, the QIPs bring direct benefits to communities at the grassroots level. So far, since 2017, 37 QIPs (including 10 QIPs being taken up in FY 2021-22) have been undertaken in 33 provinces of Vietnam. Of these, 22 have been completed, while 15 are under various stages of implementation and will be completed in FY 2021-22. In addition, 7 grant-in-aid assistance projects for the benefit of the Cham community in Ninh Thuan province were completed in December 2020 with an outlay of around US$ 1.54 million.

Capacity Building Cooperation, Training Programmes and Scholarships

11.     As part of capacity building support under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme, India has offered short-term courses in Indian institutions to nearly 3000 Vietnamese participants over the years. Separately, Indian Council of Cultural Relations offers nearly 50 scholarships for Vietnamese scholars every year. Vietnamese students are also availing of the recent initiative of Government of India launched in October 2019 to offer PhD fellowship programme in association with 23 IITs for 1000 students from ASEAN countries. Vietnam is also among our partner countries with whom we have on-going e-ITEC programmes.

Cultural Conservation Projects in Vietnam

12.     India is providing technical assistance worth US$ 2.25 million for conservation and restoration of ancient Cham monuments at the World heritage Site of My Son in Quang Nam Province of Vietnam, showcasing the deep civilizational connection between the two countries. The conservation work is being carried out by the experts from the Archaeological Survey of India.

IV.  DEFENCE PARTNERSHIP

13.     Defence cooperation between India and Vietnam is an important pillar of their Comprehensive Strategic Partnership. A Memorandum of Understanding on Defence Cooperation signed between their Ministries of Defence in 2009 and the Joint Vision on Defence Cooperation signed by their Defence Ministers in 2015 provide the broad institutional framework under which India-Vietnam defence partnership has developed in recent times.

14.      From traditional exchanges between the Ministries of Defence of the two sides, this engagement has today diversified to wide-ranging contacts between the services and military-to-military exchanges, including visits of senior military leaders, capacity building and training programmes, and bilateral exercises. The well-established bilateral annual exchange framework includes Defence Policy Dialogue at the Deputy Ministerial level, Services Staff talks and High-level Meetings between the Coast Guards. Cooperation in United Nations Peace Keeping Operations is another key area of our cooperation. A fast-growing facet of our defence engagements is the defence industrial collaboration focusing at defence modernization and capacity building driven by India’s Defence Lines of Credit to Vietnam totaling US$600 million.

15.      Regular exchange of naval ship visits is an important part of India-Vietnam defence relations. Most recently, Indian Navy Ship INS Ranvijay and INS Kora made port call at Cam Ranh in Vietnam from 15-18 August 2021 and also held bilateral maritime exercise with Vietnam People’s Navy frigate VPNS Ly Thai To (HQ-012). Another Indian Navy Ship INS Airavat came to Ho Chi Minh City on 30 August 2021 bringing COVID-19 relief supplies to Vietnam. Earlier, in December 2021, Indian Navy Ship INS Kiltan had similarly visited Ho Chi Minh City to deliver flood relief materials for the people of Central Vietnam.

III. CULTURAL COOPERATION AND PEOPLE-TO-PEOPLE EXCHANGES

Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre (SVCC), Hanoi

16.      The Swami Vivekananda Cultural Centre (SVCC) was established in Hanoi in September 2016 to promote a comprehensive understanding of India and to foster closer links between peoples of both countries through cultural exchanges. The Centre organizes cultural programmes, seminars, photo exhibitions, film screenings, lectures, workshops in varied areas such as Yoga, Indian classical dance, art and philosophy, Hindi and Sanskrit languages, traditional medicine, our shared Buddhist and Cham heritage with Vietnam, etc. SVCC has a collection of over 2,500 books, magazines, CDs and DVDs on various aspects of Indian art, culture, nature, tourism etc. SVCC also maintains close engagement with universities, academia, art institutes and friendship organisations of Vietnam.

Youth Exchanges and Academic Collaboration

17.      Both countries have regular exchange of youth delegations. Close relations are maintained with academia and think tanks in Vietnam. The Vietnam Institute for Indian and South-West Asian Studies (VIISAS) under the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences and the Centre for Indian Studies at the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics are among the key centres in Vietnam focused on Indian studies and have academic cooperation with Indian institutions.

Tourism and People-to-People Contacts

18.      Tourism exchanges were affected during 2020 due to COVID-related disruptions following the growth witnessed after the launch of direct flights between the two countries in October 2019. It is expected that after the COVID situation normalizes, the direct flight connectivity will resume and help in enhancing two-way tourism as well as trade and business linkages. Both countries have facilitated simplified visa regime to promote bilateral tourism. India has e-tourist visa arrangement for Vietnamese citizens since 2015. Vietnam extended e-visa facilities to Indian citizens travelling to Vietnam since December 2017.

150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi

19.      Embassy of India organized various events to celebrate Mahatma@150 during the years 2019 and 2020. The Embassy of India, Vietnam’s Ministry of Information and Communication and Vietnam Post jointly launched a commemorative stamp on Mahatma Gandhi on Gandhi Jayanti on 2 October 2019.

20.      Under the “India for Humanity” initiative launched to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, Government of India in collaboration with the Indian NGO Bhagwan Mahaveer Viklang Sahayata Samiti (BMVSS), launched the artificial limb fitment programme, popularly known as the “Jaipur Foot”, in Vietnam. Under the initiative, artificial limb fitment camps were organised by Government of India in four Provinces of Vietnam in 2018-2019 – Vinh Phuc and Phu Tho Provinces in June-July 2018 and Quang Ninh and Yen Bai Provinces in May-June 2019, providing artificial limbs to more than 1000 people.

Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav

21.      To celebrate the 75th Independence Day of India and the “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav”, the Embassy, in collaboration with the Indian community in Vietnam and various Vietnamese organisations, has been undertaking a number of activities to showcase India’s achievements and developments in India-Vietnam relations. A list of such activities may be seen at: https://www.indembassyhanoi.gov.in/news.php?cat=4

Indian Community in Vietnam

22.      It is estimated that nearly 6000 people from India, including short-term visitors, constitute the Indian community in Vietnam. Majority of them are based in and around Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) in the southern part of Vietnam. Most of the community members are professionals employed in business and trading companies, oil refineries, IT sector, hotels/restaurants, mining, yoga institutions, civil aviation sector and schools. Some Indians in Vietnam currently hold senior positions in multi-national companies and international organisations. Indian Business Chamber (INCHAM), a recognized organization by the Government of Vietnam, represents Indian community and promotes Indian business interests in Vietnam.

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September 2021