Ambassador Verma shed light on the prospects of the India-Vietnam relationship following the success of the recent 13th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam, in an interview granted to VOV. Following is the full text of the interview.
VOV: H.E. Ambassador Pranay Verma, how do you evaluate Vietnam, its people, and land after having been there for more than a year?
Ambassador Verma: Well, the last one and half year of since I arrived in Vietnam has been a great experience. It is an amazingly vibrant country, with a rare blend of history, tradition and modernity. There is a long cultural history that India and Vietnam share that is visible when one travels around in Vietnam. Our heritage conservation project in Quang Nam province at the My Son Cham temple complex is one such example.
I find the Vietnamese people very warm and positive towards India, which is really great to see. People are also full of hope and optimism about their future that shows the economic dynamism and forward-looking character of this great country. Living here during the COVID-19 pandemic, I have also witnessed firsthand Vietnam’s effective handling of COVID-19 pandemic, which has earned the country so much international praise.
VOV: The 13th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam has just finished. What do you think about the leading role of the Communist Party of Vietnam, and what impresses you the most?
Ambassador Verma: The role played by the Communist Party of Vietnam in the country’s independence and reunification is well documented. Since the launch of the Doi Moi (Renewal) process 35 years ago, Vietnam has consistently moved forward on the path towards national modernization, transforming itself from a war-ravaged impoverished nation to one of the fastest growing economies in the world.
The recently concluded 13th National Party Congress comes against the backdrop of a challenging year, which created many disruptions across the globe due to COVID-19. Vietnam successfully addressed the complex pandemic situation and brought economic stability and positive growth. Moving forward, the Congress has identified the opportunities and challenges that Vietnam faces and set the goal for socio-economic advancement over the next five to ten years. The vision for the country to become a high-income developed country by 2045 sets a clear long-term strategy for the nation’s development. As a close friend and partner, we wish Vietnam all success and stand ready to strengthen our multifaceted partnership to mutual benefit.
The President of India has also sent a congratulatory message to the General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam. He looked forward to continuing to work closely with him to further deepen the relations between the governments and peoples of India and Vietnam.
VOV: Under a new government, how do you expect the Vietnam-India relationship to be in the future and what will further promote bilateral relations in the future?
Ambassador Verma: Vietnam is one of India’s most trusted friends and closest partners. As comprehensive strategic partners, there is a wide range of areas in which we are collaborating – ranging from political engagement to trade and investment ties, energy cooperation, development partnership, defence and security cooperation, cultural and people-to-people exchanges. During the Virtual Summit between our Prime Ministers in December 2020, they adopted a historic “Joint Vision for Peace, Prosperity and People” that will guide the future development of our ties.
Our defence partnership, and economic and development cooperation are the key pillars of our future engagement. Water resource management, healthcare, education and heritage conservation are some of the emerging areas of our development partnership that will grow. Domains like energy, space and digital technologies will acquire greater salience in our engagement, as both countries move decisively to embrace Industry 4.0. Direct connectivity that will bring both our peoples and businesses closer is another key priority of our future ties. I am confident that under the new government in Vietnam, the momentum of our engagements in all these areas will further intensify guided by the Joint Vision of our leaders.
VOV: Vietnamese people are celebrating the traditional Lunar New Year festival (Tet). Through the Voice of Vietnam, would you like to send some wishes to Vietnamese people on this occasion?
Ambassador Verma: Tet is the most important festival for the people of Vietnam marking the lunar New Year and celebrated not just all over Vietnam but also by the Vietnamese community living abroad. As the date of the festival draws closer, despite the difficulties posed by the pandemic, there is hope and festivity in the atmosphere.
I feel that Tet is an important occasion for the people of Vietnam and all of us who live in Vietnam, to remember the importance of cultural traditions and values of family get-together and social bonding. I would like to thank VOV for giving me this opportunity through your channel to convey to all your listeners and viewers my warmest greeting for the Tet and a very happy and prosperous Year of the Buffalo! Chuc Mung Nam Moi! May the New Year be full of health and happiness for all and bring more of good news for our friendship!
VOV: Thank you very much, H.E. Ambassador Pranay Verma, for joining us.