Australia-India-Japan-US Consultations on the Indo-Pacific


India, Australia, Japan and the US on Sunday agreed that "a free, open, prosperous and inclusive" Indo-Pacific served long-term global interests, giving impetus to an emerging quad of democracies amid China's rising military and economic power.

In the meeting, seen as the first major move in formation of the quadrilateral security dialogue - or 'quad, ' as it has been dubbed - the officials deliberated on the evolving security scenario in the Indo-Pacific region besides delving into effectively combating threat of terrorism and other security challenges.

US President Donald Trump has been increasingly using the term "Indo-Pacific" for Asia-Pacific to clearly signal the inclusion of India in the Indian Ocean.

China on Monday said the US, Japan, India and Australia should not target Beijing, a day after the leaders of four nations met on the sidelines of the ASEAN Summit in Manila and chose to work for a "free, open, prosperous and inclusive Indo-Pacific region". "The concept is Asia-Pacific or Indo-Pacific, or whether the region is Indo-Pacific or Asia-Pacific, it should correspond with the trend of the times and trend of the world", he said. "They agreed that a free, open, prosperous and inclusive Indo-Pacific region serves the long-term interests of all countries in the region and of the world at large", the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement on the quadrilateral.

The brief interaction between Modi and Trump came ahead of their scheduled bilateral meeting tomorrow.

The officials also exchanged views on addressing common challenges of terrorism and proliferation linkages impacting the region as well as on enhancing connectivity.

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The four countries are working to revive their quadrilateral dialogue.

India responded to Kono's comments by saying that New Delhi was open to work with like-minded countries that advance India's interests.

The Indian side highlighted India's Act East Policy as the cornerstone of its engagement in the Indo-Pacific region. "We will not be able to compete with the kind of terms that China offers, but countries have to decide: What are they willing to pay to secure their sovereignty and their future control of their economies And we've had those discussions with them, as well", he said.

The quadrilateral meeting of officials of the four countries in Manila - their leaders chose to have lower-level diplomats meet in a cautious beginning - has been followed closely by Beijing and strategic experts in China, coming on the heels of the Donald Trump administration rolling out an "Indo-Pacific" strategy that suggests a more broad approach to the region.

By Nirendra DevManila, Nov 12 (UNI) The high-profile ASEAN Business Summit slated to take place in the Philippines capital on Monday and to be attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi will go a long way into strengthening economic partnerships and is likely to take initiatives at reducing non-tariff barriers and at ensuring better connectivity and mobility of people and goods. All the leaders were dressed in Barong Tagalong - an embroidered shirt that's the national dress of the Philippines.