PM concludes three-nation tour, looks forward to Obama visit

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Old 31-Oct-2010
PM concludes three-nation tour, looks forward to Obama visit

New Delhi October 31:

Ahead of US President Barack Obama's India visit in November, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the India-US cooperation is witnessing a new phase of cordiality and understanding.

Concluding his seven-day three-nation tour of Japan, Malaysia and Vietnam, the Prime Minister returned here. On board Air India One, he told reporters accompanying him: "India-US relations have entered a new phase. There is cordiality, there is understanding." "It is our common desire to bring about qualitative changes in our relationship," he said.

"We have economic and strategic interactions. We are strategic partners," he said. Singh, during his trip to the three nations, attended the India-ASEAN Summit and East Asia Summit in Vietnam, besides holding significant bilateral meetings with his counterparts from China, Vietnam, Singapore and Australia, as also with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Manmohan Singh earlier on Saturday stressed on the need for hard work at all levels to accelerate the pace of engagement as outlined in the Plan of Action to implement the ASEAN-India Partnership for the years 2010-15. Addressing the India-ASEAN summit, Singh praised the officials of both sides for developing a Plan of Action to implement the ASEAN-India Partnership for Peace, Progress and Shared Prosperity for the years 2010-2015. "It is an ambitious road map and the 82 Action Points reflect the vast potential and desire to develop a multi-faceted India-ASEAN relationship," he said.

At the Summits, the head of the cabinet pitched for greater integration between India and East and South East Asian countries. The visa-on-arrival facility to nationals of Cambodia, Vietnam, Philippines and Laos from January next year and a number of other measures like setting up of a Centre for Tracking and Data Reception and an Imaging facility for the ASEAN countries was also given special emphasis by the Prime Minister.

Prior to his trip to Vietnam, Singh visited Malaysia and Japan. During Singh's Japan visit, the two countries negotiated on a probable civil nuclear deal and agreed on a range of other issues to take their strategic partnership to new heights. India and Japan also announced the strengthening of a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement, which will open trade relations between the two countries.

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