India on Saturday extended $500-million line of credit to Vietnam to strengthen defence cooperation with the country in a clear sign of New Delhi boosting its presence in southeast Asia’s geopolitical scenario.
India also upgraded its relationship with Vietnam from "strategic partnership" to "comprehensive strategic partnership" following delegation-level talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.
"My conversation with PM Phuc was extensive," Modi said in a joint press address with his Vietnamese counterpart.
"We agreed to tap into the growing economic opportunities in the region," he said.
Stating that the two sides have agreed to upgrade their strategic partnership to comprehensive strategic partnership, Modi said: "PM and I have agreed to deepen our defence cooperation."
He then announced an Indian line of credit of $500 million in the defence sector to Vietnam.
India and Vietnam signed 12 agreements, including provision of offshore patrol boats and cooperation in the field of cyber security.
Modi arrived in Vietnam on Friday in what is the first prime ministerial visit from India to Vietnam in 15 years.
Earlier on Saturday, he was accorded a ceremonial welcome at the Presidential Palace in Hanoi.