President Pranab Mukherjee on Sunday arrived in the capital city of Vietnam on a three-day state visit during which the two countries are expected to sign deals on oil exploration likely in the South China Sea and starting direct flights between the two nations.
The President will meet his Vietnamese counterpart Truong Tan Sang and Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung. He has carried with him as a gift a sapling of the Bodhi tree.
The MoU for oil exploration will be signed between OVL and Petrovietnam. The location of the new sites, however, is yet to be disclosed, but the sites may include the disputed South China Sea. The possible MoU between Jet Airways and Vietnam Airlines means that the two countries would have direct flights operating from January 2015.
Also on the agenda are an MoU on Nalanda University and one under which Archaeological Survey of India will help Vietnamese authorities in the restoration of Cham monuments in ‘My Son’.
The President would inaugurate an Indian Studies Centre in the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics and Administration.
On his arrival, President Mukherjee was received with full state honours. He then went to the Thang Long Theater to watch a traditional Vietnamese water puppet show.