Diplomacy is not just about 'wordsmithery' , says foreign minister S Jaishankar

Lauding India's ‘Act East' and 'Neighbourhood First’ policies, he said that it will have an impact on the country “beyond the confines of South Asia”.
External affairs minister S Jaishankar addresses the inaugural session of NADI 2022 (Natural Allies in Development and Interdependence) "Asian Confluence River Conclave 2022", at Radisson Blu, in Guwahati on Saturday, May 28, 2022. (ANI)
External affairs minister S Jaishankar addresses the inaugural session of NADI 2022 (Natural Allies in Development and Interdependence) "Asian Confluence River Conclave 2022", at Radisson Blu, in Guwahati on Saturday, May 28, 2022. (ANI)
Published on May 29, 2022 09:22 AM IST
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Written by Manjiri Sachin Chitre | Edited by Swati Bhasin

Diplomacy is not just about bridging positions through "wordsmithery", foreign minister S Jaishankar said on Saturday, as he spoke on regional cooperation while addressing an event in Guwahati. "It is equally about bridging societies with projects. It is about connectivity, it's about contacts and it's about cooperation," the minister said while addressing the Natural Allies in Development and Interdependence (NADI) Asian Confluence River Conclave.

Lauding India's ‘Act East' and 'Neighbourhood First’ policies, he said that it will have an impact on the country “beyond the confines of South Asia”. Jaishankar added that the policies are set to make a “difference to the Indo-Pacific economic framework”. "Coming together of 'Act East & Neighbourhood First' policies have an enormous impact... it extends beyond South Asia... This will not only build on ties with ASEAN, Japan but make a difference to the Indo-Pacific economic framework," the minister said.

Also read: Quad to take up the Indo-Pacific challenge in Tokyo

During the event, Jaishankar mentioned that “if the land connectivity between Myanmar and sea connectivity between Bangladesh become viable, then on a commercial scale, it will create an East-West lateral with sweeping consequences for the continent.” He further added that “better connectivity is central for improving the business and easing livelihood in the state.”

The foreign minister - during his address - also informed about the projects for which India is collaborating with Bangladesh, which include the improvement of the Ashuganj River Port-Akhaura Land Port Road under an LoC of more than USD 400 million, and Baruerhat to Ramgarh connectivity road project on the India-Bangladesh border - worth USD 80.06 million, according to a report by news agency ANI.

During the recently-held Quad leaders' summit in Tokyo, the member countries had discussed the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework which will enable the United States and the allies to decide on the rules.

Also read: Quad Summit to focus on key challenges, ways to keep Indo-Pacific free and open

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said that a “free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific remains a shared objective and Quad partners have increased coordination in areas such as vaccine delivery, climate action, supply chain resilience, disaster response and economic cooperation despite the difficulties posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.”

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Tuesday, June 28, 2022