EAM S Jaishankar: During a meeting held in Indonesia, the External Affairs Minister (EAM) of India, S Jaishankar, engaged with the Secretary-General of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Kao Kim Hourn. In this significant encounter, EAM Jaishankar proposed the establishment of India-ASEAN dialogues focusing on key areas such as finance, cyber, and maritime domains.
The meeting between EAM Jaishankar and Secretary-General Kao Kim Hourn underscores India’s commitment to strengthening its ties with ASEAN, a regional organization comprising ten Southeast Asian countries. Recognizing the increasing importance of collaboration and cooperation in the global context, particularly in areas of mutual interest, EAM Jaishankar put forward the idea of establishing specific dialogues between India and ASEAN in crucial domains.
Taking to the Twitter, EAM Jaishankar wrote, “Started my engagements in Indonesia with a meeting with ASEAN Secretary General Dr Kao Kim Hourn. Discussed the development of our comprehensive strategic partnership. Suggested India-ASEAN dialogues in finance, cyber and maritime domains”.
“Noted the ongoing work in energy, disaster management and health and wellness. Agreed to expand our Track II engagement,” he further tweeted.
The EAM said the ASEAN relationship paves the way for the Indo-Pacific Vision. “India is therefore deeply committed to the principle of ASEAN centrality,” Jaishankar wrote.
EAM Jaishankar on Friday also met Malaysia Foreign Minister Zambry Abdul Kadir.
“Great to meet the Foreign Minister of Malaysia Dr Zambry Adbul Kadir. Discussed our expanding bilateral cooperation. Exchanged views on ASEAN-related issues. Look forward to welcoming him in India,” the EAM tweeted on Wednesday.
External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar has embarked on a six-day visit to Indonesia and Thailand from July 12-18. The purpose of his visit is to participate in various important meetings and engage in bilateral discussions with counterparts from ASEAN and Mekong Ganga Cooperation (MGC) countries.
In the first leg of his visit, EAM Jaishankar will travel to Jakarta, Indonesia, to attend Foreign Ministers’ Meetings under the ASEAN framework. These meetings will include the ASEAN-India, East Asia Summit, and ASEAN Regional Forum formats. The EAM will actively participate in discussions on regional and global issues and reaffirm India’s commitment to ASEAN centrality in the Indo-Pacific region. Furthermore, he will hold bilateral meetings with other participating countries to enhance bilateral cooperation and strengthen ties.
After the ASEAN meetings in Jakarta, EAM Jaishankar will proceed to Bangkok, Thailand, to take part in the 12th Foreign Ministers’ Meeting of the Mekong Ganga Cooperation (MGC) mechanism. The MGC, guided by India’s Act East Policy, is one of the oldest mechanisms in the lower Mekong region, focusing on promoting cooperation in various sectors. The EAM will engage in discussions with participating countries to further enhance cooperation within the MGC framework and explore new avenues for collaboration.
Additionally, in Bangkok, EAM Jaishankar will attend the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) Foreign Ministers’ Retreat. BIMSTEC is a regional organization comprising countries from South Asia and Southeast Asia, aiming to enhance cooperation in multiple sectors such as trade, investment, technology, and connectivity. The EAM’s participation in the retreat underscores India’s commitment to strengthening regional integration and cooperation among BIMSTEC member countries.