New Delhi: India and Vietnam on Wednesday signed a number of bilateral agreements including an extradition treaty.
The announcement was made after Vietnam President Truong Tan Sang, who is on a three-day visit to India, held comprehensive talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
The two leaders discussed the bilateral issues of "mutual interest", including the ways to strengthen ties in the area of defence, science and technology, culture and so on.
Later addressing a joint press conference, the two leaders exhorted to deepen strategic and defence ties between the two countries.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described India`s strategic partnership with Vietnam "a factor of peace, stability and development" in the Asia-Pacific region.
"It stands on its own merits. The President`s visit has given a new thrust and direction to this partnership," he said.
“The extradition treaty would provide legal and institutional basis for the cooperation,” the Prime Minister added.
The PM noted that India and Vietnam are maritime neighbours and both faced security challenges on areas like terrorism, piracy and natural disasters. "We have to work together to ensure the safety and security of vital sea lanes of communication," he said.
Sang’s India visit is his first foreign tour outside the ASEAN region after he assumed office in August 2011.
Vietnam President visit to New Delhi gains significance as it comes amid China’s opposition to Indo-Vietnamese oil exploration projects in the South China Sea.