India will continue to further boost coordination between its research institutes and those from ASEAN to promote the two sides’ economic growth and stability and ensure peace.

Indian Minister of External Affairs Salman Khurshid made the pledge at the 6th India-ASEAN Delhi Dialogue opened in New Delhi on March 6. The event saw the presence of a Vietnamese delegation led by Deputy Foreign Minister Pham Quang Vinh.

Addressing the event, Minister Khurshid emphasised the importance of the dialogue to strengthening India and ASEAN’s efforts to move forward an open, comprehensive, and constant dialogue.

He asserted that the 6 th dialogue themed “Realizing the ASEAN-India Vision for Partnership and Prosperity” will open up all-around discussion on ways to move towards India ’s strategic partnership with the club.

The two sides have 26 regular dialogue mechanisms in various fields. They will continue to implement the ASEAN-India action plan until 2015, focusing on the spheres of space, science and technology, and agriculture, the Indian official noted.

Economy lays a foundation for a strategic partnership. India has recently approved a free trade agreement (FTA) in trade and services with the grouping, he said.

Discussion related to finance and investment to further boost the linkage between the two sides was important at the dialogue.

India is in need of investment in its infrastructure and encourages FDI in the fields of construction and seaport maintenance.

The minister also underlined cooperation potential between the two sides at ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) and ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting-Plus (ADMM+).

Both sides’ priority will be given to people-to-people exchanges, energy and food security, anti-terrorism and fighting against cross-national crimes.

Two-way trade turnover surpassed 70 billion USD in 2012 and is expected to achieve the target of 100 billion USD by 2015.-VNA