Shifting the government’s focus back on South East Asia, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee is visiting two key ASEAN partners, Indonesia and Singapore, from June 17 to 20.
It will be his first visit to both countries since he assumed charge of the Foreign Office eight months ago.
Mukherjee leaves on Sunday for Jakarta where he will co-chair a meeting of the India-Indonesia Joint Commission with his counterpart Nur Hassan Wirajuda.
Indonesia is a major partner at the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and has joint interests with India in the vital Straits of Malacca. The two countries have enhanced their relations in recent years with close cooperation in defence and counter-terrorism. A summit level meeting has been held annually between the two countries since 2000.
During the latter half of his visit he is scheduled to deliver Singapore’s prestigious Distinguished Public Lecture on the subject of ‘India’s Foreign Policy Priorities.’
Expounding the government’s ‘Look East Policy,’ Mukherjee will speak on June 20 about significant changes that have taken place in India’s country’s foreign policy priorities.
He will examine the impact of India ’s economic reform on foreign policy, while addressing implications of the structural transformation of international politics in the last decade.
He will also spell out India’s approach to a variety of global challenges and make a case for creative diplomacy, both in South Asia and regions beyond. The Institute of South Asian Studies (ISAS) and the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies jointly organize this annual lecture.
While in Singapore, Mukherjee will release a book on Subhash Chandra Bose, 'Dilli Chalo,' written by his grand-nephew Sugato Bose and visit the INA memorial to pay tribute to the Netaji, officials said.