State President Truong Tan Sang’s upcoming visit to India aims to affirm Vietnam’s consistent policy of giving high priority to the strategic partnership with India and to promote the two countries’ cooperation in all fields and at regional and international forums.

With a long-standing traditional friendship, India supported Vietnam in the fight for national independence and reunification in the past as well as the country’s renewal and economic development process at present.

Since the strategic partnership was established during Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung’s visit to India in July 2007, multifaceted cooperation between Vietnam and India has been promoted in a more effective, deeper and practical manner.

Vietnam and India have agreed to increase bilateral trade to 7 billion USD by 2015. Two-way trade between the two countries reached over 2.7 billion USD last year and almost 1.8 billion USD in the first six months of this year.

Regarding cultural exchanges and tourism cooperation, India plans to open a cultural centre in Hanoi this year to promote the two countries’ exchanges. The two sides have also signed a tourism cooperation agreement and are working for the opening of a direct air route between Vietnam and India.

At the 14 th session of the Vietnam-India Joint Committee in September, the two sides agreed to enhance cooperation in oil and gas exploration, agriculture, aquaculture, information technology, education and training and healthcare.

At the regional and international forums, India supported Vietnam’s non-permanent membership of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) for the 2008-2009 term. Vietnam also backs India to increase relations with ASEAN countries, join cooperation in the East Asian community and bid for a permanent seat in an expanded UNSC./.