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Ending all speculations, it has now been confirmed that India will invite heads of all ASEAN nations to participate in the celebrations of Republic Day 2018.

Asean is the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, and has as members Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

What’s so special?

The whole hype buzzing around the market is on the back of India completing 25 years of dialogue partnership with ASEAN. Not only this, 2017 will mark the completion of 15 years of summit-level interactiion. It will also mark five years of strategic partnership with ASEAN member states.

ASEAN has also worked on a collaborated agenda themed, ‘Shared Values, Common Destiny’. Meanwhile, Singapore and Vietnam have also extended its interest in inviting India for strengthening its reach in their respective countries.

On the back of deteriorating relations between India and China due to the ongoing border tussle, nothing can be said as to how things will be sorted on that front. Additionally, China has issued ‘safety alert’ for its citizens travelling to India.

What does the future hold in stock for India and Asean?

In 2012, India and Asean upgraded their collaboration to a strategic partnership. The NDA government is highly inclined towards strengthening strategic ties, as the government is paying huge impetus to scale up defense and security ties.

Foreign minister Sushma Swaraj recently highlighted the common ground which is shared by India and Asean. She struck similarities between traditional and non-traditional security challenges.

At the India-ASEAN Delhi Dialogue, Sushma Swaraj said: “Freedom of navigation and respect for international law is therefore imperative in this context. Equally, we remain committed with ASEAN to enhance our maritime cooperation, to realise the full potential of our ocean economy. We will continue to step up cooperation in countering terrorism, piracy and other transnational crimes.”

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