ASEAN commemorative summit begins on Thursday

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ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) is a multilateral body whose member countries include Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, Brunei, Laos, Myanmar, Cambodia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam.

With an eye on increasing Chinese naval assertiveness in the South China Sea, maritime security and cooperation is at the top of the agenda of the much anticipated India-ASEAN Commemorative Summit in New Delhi starting tomorrow.

Negotiations between ASEAN and China for the COC began during the closing years of the last century. In the current fiscal year, bilateral trade stands at $70 billion.

As China plans several of its own infrastructure projects with Southeast Asian countries, the summit could demonstrate the intensifying rivalry between India and China for regional influence.

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While hardselling India's economic opportunities to the world, the prime minister also held bilateral talks with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau, Swiss president Alan Berset and Queen Maxima of Netherlands.

PM Phuc suggested that as one of the leading countries in the fourth Industrial Revolution, India should further accelerate collaboration with ASEAN in the fields of innovation, connection of various industries and participation in global value chains, thence creating a favourable environment to facilitate bilateral relations.

On Friday, Duterte will be among all 10 Asean heads of state and government who will attend this year's Republic Day celebrations as guests of honour, something unprecedented, since the leader of only one foreign country has attended the event as the chief guest all these years. How can India & ASEAN further their ties.

The MoUs exchanged between the two counties in space cooperation would define the framework and conditions of cooperation for the establishment of a facility to provide Indian remote sensing satellite data over ASEAN region. Six years later, India became a summit-level partner. "There has been a gradual shift towards value-added healthy food and India and ASEAN can collaborate for processing and export of such value-added food products", he said. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, then-U.S. President Barack Obama and France's Francois Hollande were guests of honor in 2014, 2015 and 2016 respectively. They were stuck in traffic snarls owing to the VIP movement and the security arrangements put in place by police ahead of the Republic Day. The Air Force also performs a fly-by. Various government departments also showcase their achievements.

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