As Pakistan's economy continues to remain in crisis, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Thursday said that no country can come out of the difficult situation "if its basic industry is terrorism."
Speaking at the annual Asia Economic Dialogue organised by the external affairs ministry in Pune on Thursday, Jaishankar said, "The reality of this particular relationship (India-Pakistan) is that it has a fundamental issue which we cannot and we must not avoid. And that issue is that of terrorism because the moment you start doing this walk around that..."
"And we mustn't be in denial of what are very fundamental problems in that relationship. And just as a country has to fix its economic issues, a country has to fix its political issues, too. A country has to fix its social issues too. No country will ever come out of a difficult situation and become prosperous power if its basic industry is terrorism," he added.
Notably, Pakistan's economy is in shambles and the country is holding virtual talks on the Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies (MEFP) in order to strike the staff-level agreement.
He also stated that it is in nobody's interest that any country least of all a neighbouring country get into severe economic difficulties. But, if any country gets into severe economic problems that country has to make policy choices and governance decisions to get itself out of it.
"There's no doubt role or salience of Asia will increase. Asia is growing because Asia has been global, what we shouldn't fall for is 'Asia for Asians', that rhetoric is misleading, appeals to primitive chauvinism. It actually has deep strategic intent behind it," Jaishankar said while addressing the presser.
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Meanwhile, Jaishankar also highlighted the 'Neighbourhood First' policy, the state of the world and India's G20 Presidency at the event.
"If I were to pick three big issues in the forefront of my thoughts, one I would actually reflect on our neighbourhood, partly because we are in the neighbourhood, 3 of us," said Jaishankar.
The Inaugural Session of the Dialogue was a conversation between Jaishankar, Lyonpo Namgay Tshering, Bhutan's Finance Minister, and Ibrahim Ameer, Maldives' Finance Minister.
The Asia Economic Dialogue (AED) is the Ministry's annual flagship event on Geoeconomics, co-hosted in collaboration with Pune International Centre.
The 7th edition of the AED is being held from 23-25 February 2023 in Pune. The principal theme for the Dialogue is 'Asia and the Emerging World Order'. The Dialogue will also discuss themes such as Global Growth Prospects; How the Global South Will Shape the G20 Agenda; the Metaverse: Understanding the Future; and Meeting Climate Targets: The Road Ahead, added the Ministry of External Affairs press release.
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