Patil calls for greater economic ties between India, Vietnam

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Ho Chi Minh City, Nov 24 (UNI) President Pratibha Devisingh Patil tonight called for taking the relationship between India and Vietnam to greater strength in diverse areas.

''There is an immense possibility of further strengthening cooperation in diverse areas so that strategic partnership between India and Vietnam continues to acquire great strength,'' she said in her address at a dinner hosted in her honour by Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Chairman Le Hoang Quan.

She said ''the two nations stood by each other in the past, and as we stand now at the threshold of prosperity, it would be our endeavour to walk together, hand-in-hand, for future cooperation.'' Ms Patil earlier received a red-carpet welcome on her arrival to this historic city named after this country's founder President.

The President said the relationship between India and Vietnam which had its cultural and traditional moorings dating back to centuries, remained solid despite changing world around and exuded confidence that the bilateral relations between the two-Asean partners would continue to develop.

Lauding the rapid economic progress made by the Vietnam, she said India was also engaged in a similar process of major economic reforms and economic development. India's policies ''provides new opportunities to entrepreneurs, businessmen and industrialists'' for investment. Both the countries, therefore, should take advantage of the present environment and avail the emerging opportunities for investments.

She said a business delegation accompanying her on the tour would interact with their Vietnamese counterparts in this regard.

The President complimented Ho Chi Minh City leadership for playing a pivotal role in the country's development.

Ms Patil offered linking Mumbai and Ho Chi Minh City as sister cities, because they drive the economic engines in the two fast growing nations.

Editors here pick up from earlier series.

UNI KAS ATI PK HT1932

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