East Asia Summit Current Affairs - 2019

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Facts Box: Indo-Pacific Oceans Initiative

The Indo-Pacific Initiative was proposed by PM Modi for a safe and secure maritime at the East Asia Summit. This indicates that India is ready to play a bigger role in the region where China has been pushing its military assertiveness.

Facts of Indo-Pacific Initiative

  • The idea of the initiative was mooted by the PM when he addressed the East Asia Summit in Thailand.
  • The main objective of the initiative is to achieve safe, secure and a stable maritime domain.
  • The initiative aims to achieve this by creating partnerships among interested states by sustainably using marine resources.
  • To take the initiative forward, India will organize a Indo-Pacific Conclave in Chennai early next year.
  • Japan, Australia and Thailand support the initiative already. And many more ASEAN countries are expected to express their support to the initiative in the near future.
  • The initiative is considered by the experts as an incremental step to the Shangri la dialogue.

Significance of the initiative

  • This will give confidence to minor players of ASEAN that their role in the region will not be diluted
  • It will ensure freedom of navigation, freedom of overflights and the disputed are resolved as per international conventions

PM Modi meets Indonesian President and Thailand PM

PM Modi on the sidelines of 35th ASEAN summit and 14th East Asia Summit, met the President of Indonesia H.E. Joko Widodo and the Thailand PM Prayut Chan-o-Cha (Gen (retd)).

Highlights of the meetings: Indonesia President

  • The leaders discussed the threat to extremism and terrorism and agreed to work closely. The meeting on terrorism is important for India’s interests in the Indo-Pacific region.
  • Also, they discussed on trade, investment and connectivity and Indo-Pacific
  • India has asked for greater market access in the region in the fields of pharmaceuticals, agricultural products and automotive.
  • The meeting also gains its importance as India and Indonesia are celebrating their 70th anniversary of establishment of diplomatic relations. The countries are close maritime neighbors having historical and cultural linkages. Also India’s ‘Act East Policy’ is complimented by Indonesia’s ‘Look West’ policy.

Highlights of the meetings: Thailand PM

  • The leaders welcomed the 20% increase in the bilateral trade between the countries
  • They agreed to explore opportunities for cooperation in defence industries sector
  • PM Modi discussed ways to enhance connectivity between the two countries in the areas of digital connectivity and physical connectivity.
  • India and Thailand are close maritime neighbors. India’s Act East Policy is complimented by the Thailand’s Look West Policy as that of Indonesia.