|Delegates attending the online workshop
The view was shared by delegates attending an online workshop jointly held in New Delhi on June 12 by the Vietnam Trade Office in India and the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM).
Delegates examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on economies worldwide, including Vietnam and India, and ways of weathering the storm. They also touched upon cooperation opportunities the two countries will enjoy as soon as the pandemic is under control, as well as addressing hurdles to promote bilateral trade and investment.
Indian Ambassador to Vietnam Pranay Verma pointed to the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic is a good chance for the two sides to find new opportunities to promote bilateral cooperation, especially in the context of global supply chains changing.
According to Verma, the Vietnamese market still has a lot of potential with Indian businesses that excel at pharmaceuticals, steel and agriculture. He expressed hope that Vietnamese businesses will learn and make more investment in India in the time to come.
Meanwhile, Vietnamese ambassador to India Pham Sanh Chau suggested that the two countries open direct flights linking each other's economic centers, considering this an advantage for increased trade exchanges, when the COVID-19 is contained. The next step, he said, should be the opening of direct maritime routes, helping to shorten the time of transporting goods between the two countries.
Ambassador Chau disclosed that Vietnam is considering licensing Indian banks to open branches in Vietnam, and granting longer-term visas to Indian firms to explore business and tourism opportunities in Vietnam.
Over the years, India has attached great importance to promoting closer economic relations with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), with bilateral trade and investment growing continuously.
Within ASEAN, Vietnam, a country of 96 million consumers, is considered a major exporter. Vietnam is currently India's fourth largest trading partner among ASEAN countries. It is the 8th largest market for Indian exports globally, and is the 2nd largest market among ASEAN countries.