A head of the Quad meeting between PM Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden and other members of the grouping, US has said it was important for the nation to underline the importance Indo-Pacific holds for the current Biden administration.
Leaders of India, United States, Japan and Australia will hold their first summit in a virtual format under the framework of the Quadrilateral coalition or Quad on March 12, in a major step towards enhancing cooperation in the Indo-Pacific amid rising global concerns over China’s growing assertiveness.
US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said, “It was important for us to underline in the early days of this administration our commitment to the Indo-Pacific. It’s a region that holds tremendous promise for the United States, also tremendous challenge. We want to deepen that engagement, and this is an important forum with important partners with whom we share a good deal of interest, so it was important for us to demonstrate that early on.”
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Tuesday said the leaders will discuss regional and global issues of shared interest, and exchange views on practical areas of cooperation towards maintaining a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.
On being asked if Quad is heading towards a military dimension or economic, political Ned Price refrained from putting his finger on one.
“The Quad is a grouping with important friends and allies of the United States, and it’s a grouping that is predicated on shared interests,” said Price.
He added, “There are a number of shared interests. Some of them involve maritime security, global health, climate. So, I would hesitate to point to one animating challenge that the Quad is set to address today. We are engaging with the Quad to take on those collective shared interests that will be relevant in that setting.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be participating, along with Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison and Prime Minister of Japan Yoshihide Suga and President of USA Joseph Biden, in the first Leaders’ Summit of the Quadrilateral Framework, being held virtually on March 12, said the government.
The four Quad member countries have been resolving to uphold a rules-based international order in the Indo-Pacific.