Prime Minister Narendra Modi along with his counterparts from Australia and Japan on September 24 attended the first in-person summit of Quad leaders hosted by U.S. President Joe Biden and said that he firmly believed that the grouping of four democracies would act as a “force for global good” and ensure peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific as well as the entire world.
In November 2017, India, Japan, the U.S. and Australia gave shape to the long-pending proposal of setting up the Quad to develop a new strategy to keep the critical sea routes in the Indo-Pacific free of any influence, amidst China’s growing military presence in the strategic region.
At the invitation of President Biden, Mr. Modi and his counterparts Scott Morrison from Australia and Yoshihide Suga from Japan met at the White House for the first-ever in-person Quad summit. President Biden hosted the first virtual summit of the four leaders in March.
Opening the summit, Mr. Biden said the four democracies have come together to take on common challenges from COVID-19 to climate. “This group has democratic partners who share world views and have common vision for the future,” he said. “We know how to get things done and are up to the challenge,” he added.
In a short and crisp opening address, Prime Minister Modi said that he was confident that “our participation in Quad will ensure peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific as well as the entire world”.
He said, “I am confident that our cooperation will establish peace and prosperity in the world and Indo-Pacific. I firmly believe our Quad would act as a force for global good. We had come together for first time after the 2004 Tsunami for regional cooperation in Indo-Pacific.
“Today, as the world is fighting COVID-19, we as part of Quad have come together again for humanity. Our Quad vaccine initiative will greatly help the Indo-Pacific countries,” he said. “On the basis of our shared democratic values, Quad has decided to move forward with a positive thinking and a positive approach. Be it supply chain or global security, climate action or COVID-19 response, or cooperation in technology, I would feel happy to discuss with my partners in Quad.”
Mr. Morrison said that the Indo-Pacific region should be free from coercion and disputes should be solved in accordance with international law. “The Indo-Pacific has great challenges and challenges have to be overcome. In six months from the last meeting so much has been accomplished. We stand here together in the Info Pacific region,” he said.
Japanese Prime Minister Suga said, “I hope we are able to hold a relevant summit.”
PM Modi in U.S. updates | September 24, 2021
During the summit, the four leaders are expected to discuss promoting a free and open Indo-Pacific, address the climate crisis and advance practical cooperation on areas like combatting COVID-19.