While co-chairing the 3rd India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) Summit in Papua New Guinea on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that India believes in multilateralism and supports a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific.
PM Modi, while speaking at the forum also said that for him, the Pacific island nations are "large ocean countries and not small island states".
PM Modi co-chaired the 3rd India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) Summit with the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea, James Marape. Notably, 14 Pacific Island Countries (PICs) are participating in the summit.
Addressing the FIPIC Summit, PM Modi said that India is ready to share its experiences and capabilities with Pacific island countries without any hesitation.
"India is proud to be your development partner. You can count on India as a reliable partner. We are ready to share our experiences and capabilities with you without hesitation. We believe in multilateralism and support a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific," PM Modi said.
Speaking on the impact of the Covid pandemic, the Prime Minister added that it was seen the most in the Global South.
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"Challenges related to climate change, natural disasters, hunger, poverty and health were already there, now new problems are arising...I am happy that India stood by its friendly Pacific Island countries in times of difficulty," PM Modi added.
India considers it its responsibility to convey the concerns of the Global South, their expectations and their aspirations to the world through the G20. This was my effort in the last two days at the G7 summit as well, he said.
Earlier today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Papua New Guinea counterpart held a bilateral in Port Moresby and discussed cooperation in Commerce, technology, and healthcare as well as climate change.
Calling the talks productive, Prime Minister Modi said that they covered the full range of bilateral relations between India and Papua New Guinea.
"Prime Minister James Marape and I had very productive talks, covering the full range of bilateral relations between India and Papua New Guinea. We discussed ways to augment cooperation in commerce, technology, healthcare and in addressing climate change," PM Modi tweeted.
Moreover, the two leaders also launched a translation of the Tamil classic 'Thirukkural' in the Tok Pisin language of Papua New Guinea.
The book, which was launched by the PMs of India and Papua New Guinea was co-authored by Subha Sasindran and Governor Sasindran Muthuvel of West New Britain Province.
PM Modi arrived in the Indo-Pacific country on the second leg of his three-country visit. Upon PM Modi's arrival, the Indian national anthem was played and the two prime ministers stood still in respect. PM Modi was also accorded a guard of honour on his arrival.
This is PM Modi's first tour to PNG, as well as the first-ever visit by any Indian Prime Minister to the Indo-Pacific country.
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