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India has to grow globally, says External Affairs Minister

India to open 18 embassies in Africa

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India to open 18 embassies in Africa

 

The High Commission of India in Singapore
Minister Jaishankar in dialogue with R. Sukumar, Editor-in-Chief, Hindustan Times.

 

If India is to grow economically beyond the confines of South Asia, to get global, the relationship with Southeast Asia, Asean and Singapore are going to be fundamental to that, External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar said on 6 Sept 2019 in Singapore.

“As we get bigger and our interest widens, the importance of this region rises,” he said at the Mint Asia Leadership Summit in Singapore attended by over 400 business executives.

“You cannot be among the top five economies of the world and say my world is really is between the Bay of Bengal and Arabian Sea. Naturally, as you progress, the world will expand beyond.”

“If India is to grow (economically) beyond the confines of South Asia, to get global, the relationship with Southeast Asia, Asean and Singapore are going to be fundamental to that,” said Jaishankar underlining the importance of regional cooperation.

He also elaborated on Indo Pacific, saying it would be the natural progression of India’s interest, influence and engagement in the region which stretches from the Indian Ocean through to Pacific to the US shores.

The Minister pointed out that India’s progress is not only in one direction.

Today, India interests in Africa has seen remarkable achievements

“We are opening 18 new embassies in Africa. There are African countries where India is the largest investor,” said Jaishankar highlighting India’s progress globally.

India has African initiatives, he said, adding that just like China, US, Japan and Russia also have Africa-focused initiatives.

“We do see in many ways Africa a region where we need to pay much more attention and all our new embassies we are opening are in the continent,” stressed Jaishankar.

Touching on trade issues with the US, the Minister said he was not very disturbed by the differences and problems.

“Reality is that if you trade with a country, you are going to have trade issues. Questions is how to manage these issues. I really think most of them (issues) are resolvable.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has discussed these issues with President Donald Trump during their meeting in Osaka. Indian and US trade ministers are also talking about them.

“Frankly I am quite confident that we will be able work our way through these,” he said of the issues around trade and tariff with the US. fiinews.com

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