Delivering congratulatory remarks, Mr. Huynh Thanh Lap, Chairman of the Vietnam - India Friendship Association in Ho Chi Minh City, emphasized that Vietnam and India have a long-standing traditional relationship, from trade to cultural, artistic and religious exchanges. The historic meeting between President Ho Chi Minh and Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in 1954 brought the two countries closer together, and they stood side by side through all the ups and downs of history.

Mr. Huynh Thanh Lap, Chairman of the Vietnam - India Friendship Association in Ho Chi Minh City, delivers a speech at the event. (Photo: TDO)

Since establishing diplomatic relations in 1972, especially when it was upgraded to a strategic partnership in 2007, the relationship between the two countries has gone through a long journey and made many great achievements. Currently, India is Vietnam's 10th largest trading partner. As of April 2021, India has invested in 299 projects in Vietnam with a total capital of USD909.5 million, ranking 26th out of 126 countries and territories investing in Vietnam.

Vietnam and India also achieved many positive results in cooperation in education, human resource development, culture and people-to-people diplomacy. Particularly in Ho Chi Minh City, in 2021, although it is still affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the City Union of Friendship Organizations and the Vietnam - India Friendship Association coordinated to organize many events relating to people-to-people diplomacy, business connection and investment promotion.

Mr. Huynh Thanh Lap emphasized that the City Union of Friendship Organizations and the Vietnam - India Friendship Association of Ho Chi Minh City wished to continue strengthening cooperation with the Consulate General of India in Ho Chi Minh City and the Indian Business Association in Vietnam to organize more cultural, artistic and people-to-people exchange programs; and join hands to act as a trade bridge connecting Vietnam - India businesses to contribute to consolidating and promoting the relationship between the two countries to achieve more success.

Sharing the history of Republic of India Day, Mr. Madan Mohan Sethi, Indian Consul General to Ho Chi Minh City, said that January 26, 1950 is considered India's Independence Day - the Indian Constitution Day.

India and Vietnam have a long traditional, historical relationship. That relationship is further strengthened by the great leaders of the two countries and the strong cooperative partnership in various fields. Vietnam is a key pillar of India's Act East Policy; and an important partner in India's Indo-Pacific Vision and the two countries share similar views on most international issues.

According to Mr. Madan Mohan Sethi, in order to contribute to achieving the goal of bilateral trade turnover between the two countries soon reaching USD15 billion, in the past time, despite being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Indian Consulate in Ho Chi Minh City has made efforts to organize many webinars on trade and investment in different fields, in an effort to promote trade and investment in Ho Chi Minh City with Indian localities, as well as between the two countries.

He affirmed that in 2022, the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations and the 15th anniversary of the strategic partnership between the two countries, the Indian Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City will continue to cooperate with the City Union of Friendship Organizations to promote people-to-people exchange activities, thereby opening up greater opportunities, promoting the potential between the two countries, tightening the friendly relations between the peoples, and contributing to bringing the bilateral relationship between the two countries to a new height./.

Compiled by BTA