The shared vision towards a peaceful, prosperous and growing Asia, contributing to promoting global peace and security held by ASEAN and India underlined the need to push their strategic partnership to new heights.

East Asian Secretary from the Indian Ministry of External Affairs Anil Wadhwa made the statement at the closing ceremony of the 7 th ASEAN- India Dialogue held on March 12, commending the comprehensive cooperation in the three pillars of politics-security, economics and culture-society over the past two decades.

He underscored the need to foster collaboration in maritime security and navigation freedom as well as the need for the peaceful settlement of sea disputes in line with international laws.

He also called for deepened cooperation in disaster relief, anti-piracy, counter-terrorism and cyberspace security.

The two-day dialogue brought together a number of policymakers, business leaders and academics to deliberate various issues in maritime security, building a well-educated society, developing infrastructure and connections, and measures to boost ASEAN-India relations.

They agreed that India’s proactive involvement in regional cooperation mechanisms such as the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and the ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting Plus (ADMM+) will promote the implementation of codes of conduct in the East Sea.

Furthermore, with its technological advancements, India can assist the ASEAN bloc with ensuring cyberspace security in the region.

Nguyen Vu Tung, Deputy Director of the Diplomatic Academy of Vietnam, and Abhijit Singh, a researcher from the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA), made well-attended presentations on maritime security.

Enhancing connections plays a significant role in the strategic collaboration between the ASEAN and India, Ambassador Ton Sinh Thanh, Head of the Vietnamese delegation at the event told a Vietnam News Agency reporter on the sidelines of the dialogue.

The two sides plan to have cross-sector connections, with priority given to transportation systems, mechanisms and interpersonal exchanges, he added.

The Ambassador also underscored that free agreements on trade, services and investment signed last year will help the two sides reach their economic potential.

Trade currently generates nearly 80 billion USD in revenue and is expected to increase to 200 billion USD by 2020./.