Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday participated in the first trilateral meeting with his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe and United States President Donald Trump at the sidelines of the G20 summit in Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires, PTI reported.
The prime minister reiterated India’s commitment to making the Indo-Pacific a region of shared economic growth and described the India-Japan-United States partnership as “JAI”, or victory.
“If I put it differently, Japan, America and India is JAI,” Modi said. “In Hindi, ‘JAI’ means success. “In a way, JAI is a message of success and we are making a new beginning. Our arrangement, I believe, will play a big role in promoting world peace and prosperity.”
Modi said the three nations are dedicated to democracy and discussed ways to promote global peace and stability. “I am glad both US and Japan are our strategic partners,” he added. “Both the leaders [Trump and Abe] have been my good friends. It is a good opportunity to work together.”
Modi articulated five action points that would help promote peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region. He emphasised the importance of building consensus on an strategic architecture in the region based on principles of mutual benefit and respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The meeting comes at a time when China is engaged in territorial disputes with a number of countries in the South China Sea, and with Japan in the East China Sea.
Abe expressed his happiness at participating in “the first ever ‘JAI’ meeting” and hoped it would reinforce the trilateral partnership and its close cooperation “towards realising a free and open Indo-Pacific”.
“The relationships between our three countries is extremely good and extremely strong... with India maybe stronger than ever,” Trump said after the meeting. “We are doing very well together, we are doing a lot of trade together.”
Modi also presented a nine-point agenda at a session on international trade, international financial and tax systems. He sought “strong and active cooperation” among G20 countries to comprehensively deal with fugitive economic offenders. “Cooperation in legal processes such as effective freezing of the proceeds of crime, early return of the offenders and efficient repatriation of the proceeds of crime should be enhanced and streamlined,” he said.
The prime minister asked the members of the group to set up a mechanism to deny entry and safe havens to fugitive economic offenders. He urged the the Financial Action Task Force to take action on the matter. It would lead to timely and comprehensive exchange of information between the competent authorities and financial intelligence units, he added.
Modi also met Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin in the second such trilateral meeting among the countries after 12 years.
“The second Russia-India-China ‘RIC’ Trilateral Summit took place in Buenos Aires after a gap of 12 years,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted. “In a meeting characterised by warmth and positivity, the leaders discussed cooperation and coordination in various areas which could contribute to global peace and stability.”
Modi also had a separate talks with Xi – their fourth meeting this year. “The talks revolved around a wide range of bilateral and global subjects,” the prime minister tweeted. “Our regular interactions have added significant strength to India-China ties.”
Raveesh Kumar said the two leaders were working together to strengthen the Wuhan spirit, referring to the Wuhan summit between the two leaders in April where they had agreed to enhance strategic communication between the armies of the two countries and implement confidence-building measures. “The two leaders discussed joint efforts to further enhance mutual trust and friendship across all aspects of our ties,” Kumar added.
Earlier in the day, the prime minister met United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres. He assured him that India would play its “due and responsible” role at the climate change conference in Poland next week.