US President Donald Trump on Friday commended India for achieving “astounding” growth since opening its economy and heaped praise on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying he has been working to bring the country and its people together.

Trump was speaking at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit of chief executives in Vietnam. APEC brings together 21 economies from the Pacific region — the equivalent of about 60 per cent of the world’s GDP.

“India is celebrating its 70th anniversary of its independence. It’s a sovereign democracy as well as… think of this… (one) of over one billion people… It’s the largest democracy in the world,” Trump said.

“Since India opened its economy, it has achieved astounding growth and a new world of opportunity for its expanding middle class, and PM Modi has been working to bring that vast country and all of its people together as one, and he’s working at it very, very successfully indeed.”

The US President’s final stop on his five-nation Asian tour will be the Philippines — for an Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Summit. Modi will also be in the Philippines.