International Conference - India Vietnam Ties: Retrospect and Prospect
Global India Foundation (in collaboration with MAKAIAS), India International Centre (Annexe), New Delhi, India
14th February 2012

Global India Foundation, in collaboration with Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies (MAKAIAS), Kolkata, Institute of Foreign Policy Studies, University of Kolkata and Gamesa, India organized an International Conference on India-Vietnam Ties: Retrospect and Prospect at India International Centre Annex, New Delhi on the 14th February 2012. It marked the beginning of a conference series to be hosted by Global India Foundation for articulating the components of India’s bilateral ties with countries identified as being crucial to her national interest. The Conference witnessed the participation of members of the academia, policy practitioners and media from India and Vietnam, representing significant perspectives on the relations between the two countries. The presentations by the speakers were enriched by the observations of the Chairpersons and interactions with an informed audience.

[A] [B]

[A] From left to right: Prof. Omprakash Mishra, Prof. Vo Van Sen,Vice Admiral P. J. Jacob (Retd.), Mr. Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty, Dr. Sreeradha Datta, Prof. Suranjan Das; [B] From left to right: Dr. Binoda K Mishra, Dr. S. D. Pradhan, Amb. Arundhati Ghose, Ms. Cauvery Ganapathy

Following an introduction by Ms. Sayantani Sen, Academic Coordinator, Global India Foundation, Vice Admiral P.J Jacob, Chairman, Global India Foundation, formally initiated the proceedings of the Conference. Dr. Sreeradha Datta, Director, MAKAIAS and Prof. Dr. Vo Van Sen, President (Vice Chancellor), University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Ho Chi Minh City delivered the opening remarks. Dr. Datta stressed on the friendship and strategic partnership shared by India and Vietnam and Prof. Dr. Vo Van Sen expressed his belief that the deliberations of the Conference would review lessons and experiences of history to recognize possibilities for the stronger development of their relations in the 21st century. He also mentioned the establishment of an India Studies Centre in his esteemed University, as a part of their endeavour to build closer understanding and ties between the two countries. Dr. Suranjan Das, Vice Chancellor, University of Calcutta and Director, Institute of Foreign Policy Studies, Kolkata, expressed his solidarity with Global India Foundation in such academic deliberations which focus on constructive bilateralism, beyond the problem-centric approach of analyzing inter-state ties. Prof. Omprakash Mishra, Memeber Secretary, Global India Foundation, delivered the concluding remarks and asserted that India and Vietnam must align in the new world order on the basis on the balance of interest and opportunities, and strengthen and sustain the symmetry they historically share with each other.

[C] From left to right: Dr. Nguyen Huy Hoang, Prof. Dr. Vo Van Sen, Prof. Ngo Xuan Binh, Ms. Panchali Saikia

The special address was delivered by Shri Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty, Special Secretary, Public Diplomacy Division, Government of India who lauded the initiatives currently underway in India and Vietnam but also emphasized the need for injecting greater economic content in their relations, articulating and speeding up modalities of cooperation and also explore new areas of building partnerships. He identified science, technology and innovation through systematic Research and Development to be key areas where India and Vietnam can undertake leadership to develop brand equities, recognized for their competence globally. He also stressed on the need for promoting deeper understanding between the countries through higher linguistic training. The inaugural session was concluded by a vote of thanks proposed by Ms. Sreya Maitra Roychoudhury, Honorary Fellow, Global India Foundation.

Ambassador Arundhati Ghose chaired the first working session on security perspectives on India and Vietnam in the Asian Balance of Power and presided over a panel which included Dr. S.D Pradhan (Former Deputy National Security Advisor), Dr. Binoda Mishra (Fellow, MAKAIAS) and Ms. Cauvery Ganapathy (Fellow, GIF). Dr. Pradhan explored the problems and prospects of India and Vietnam’s relation in the current security environment. Dr. Mishra assessed India’s relationship with Vietnam in the Indo-Pacific security architecture. Ms. Ganapathy highlighted Vietnam as a common factor in the popular perceptions and strategic imperatives of India and China and juxtaposed the two.

Prof. Ngo Xuan Binh chaired the second working session on the realities and potential of economic relations between India and Vietnam. Prof. Dr. Vo Van Sen delineated forty years of multi-faceted relationship between India and Vietnam and suggested avenues for the development of richer ties. Dr. Nguyen Huy Hoang elaborated on the economic relations between the two countries and explored new opportunities to flourish and tighten bilateral cooperation in the near future. Ms. Panchali Saikia pointed out that India and Vietnam should utilize the potential of the Mekong-Ganga cooperation to boost their trade.

The final session on retrospect and prospect of India-Vietnam ties was chaired by Dr. S.D Pradhan. Dr. Ngo Xuan Binh spoke on India-Vietnam traditional and strategic relationship in the light of the challenges and opportunities offered by the new global context. Mr. Dipanjan Ray Chaudhury presented fresh perspectives on strengthening connectivity and information dissemination between Vietnam and India to improve ties in the future.

The Conference was concluded with a vote of thanks proposed by Ms. Cauvery Ganapathy.

International Conference - India Myanmar Relations: Strengthening Ties and Deepening Engagements
Global India Foundation (in collaboration with MAKAIAS), India International Centre (Annexe), New Delhi, India
15th February 2012

The Global India Foundation hosted an international conference on ‘India Myanmar Relations: Strengthening Ties and Deepening Engagements’ on February 15, 2012 in collaboration with Maulana Abul Kalam Azad Institute of Asian Studies at New Delhi. The conference features as a part of a series initiated by Global India Foundation to deliberate on India’s critical bilateral relations with a host of countries within the sub-continent and beyond.

[D] [E]

[D] From left to right: Prof. Omprakash Mishra, Vice Admiral P.J. Jacob (Retd.), Amb. Ranjan Mathai, Dr. Daw Yin Yin Myint, Dr. Sreeradha Datta; [E] From left to right:Dr.Ishani Naskar, Amb. Rajiv Bhatia, Dr. Daw Yin Yin Myint, Dr. Tin Htoo Naing, Mr. Pradeep Phanjoubam

‘India Myanmar Relations: Strengthening Ties and Deepening Engagements’ was inaugurated by a special address by Amb. Ranjan Mathai, Foreign Secretary, Government of India (Speech). Amb. Mathai highlighted the historical antecedents and socio-cultural familiarity in India-Myanmar relations. Myanmar serves as a land bridge with South East Asia and ASEAN. In the context of India’s growing trade with ASEAN, Myanmar’s presence and importance becomes even more critical in India’s foreign policy. While Myanmar seeks to make the country more receptive to business and investment, it becomes imperative for us to encourage more research and analyses on the subject through similar seminars and deliberations. The two countries can cooperate in the sphere of agricultural research, science and technology, ICT, bio-technology. India can also facilitate in English Language training. India is Myanmar’s 5th largest trading partner and 4th largest export destination. Myanmar has huge hydrocarbon potentials and mineral reserves with its gas fields dating beyond a century. A more proximate relation with Myanmar will help India actualize its aspirations in ASEAN and South East Asia.

[F] From left to right: Dr. Gurudas Das, Dr. Rakhee Bhattacharya, Dr. Prabir De , Amb. Salman Haidar, Ms. Sayantani Sen Mazumdar

The Conference offered a platform to academics and practitioners from Myanmar and India to discuss and deliberate on a host of issues ranging from Myanmar’s strategic location – the challenges and opportunities that this can offer, Myanmar’s contiguity with India’s North-East and the prospect of political and economic partnership between India and Myanmar. The academic sessions enabled an informed debate on several aspects of relevance in the context of India’s bi-lateral ties with Myanmar. The presence of international participants like Dr.. Daw Yin Yin Myint (Director General, Myanmar Institute of Strategic and International Studies-MSIS, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Yangon, Myanmar), Dr. Tin Htoo Naing (National Consultant, ASEAN 2030 Study, Asian Development Bank Institute, Yangon, Myanmar), and Dr. Pavin Chachavalpongpun (Fellow, Institute of South East Asian Studies, Singapore) provided fresh perspectives on the existing discourse. The contributions of scholars and experts like Amb. Rajiv Bhatia (Former Indian Ambassador to Myanmar), Dr. Ishani Naskar (Faculty, Rabindra Bharati University), Mr. Pradeep Phanjoubam (Editor, Imphal Free Press, Imphal, Manipur), Dr. Gurudas Das (Faculty, National Institute of Technology, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Silchar), Dr. Rakhee Bhattacharya (Fellow, Rajiv Gandhi Institute for Contemporary Studies, Delhi), Dr. Prabir De (Fellow, Research and Information System for Developing Countries), Dr. Amita Batra (Faculty, South Asian Study, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi), Dr. C.J. Thomas (Acting Director, ICSSR-North-East Regional Council, Shillong) and Ms. Sayantani Sen Mazumdar (Fellow, Global India Foundation, Kolkata) accorded a scholastic supremacy to the proceedings.