PM Modi leaves for US, will meet President Biden, address UN general assembly
Prime Minister Narendra Modi departed for his much-awaited visit to the United States on Wednesday morning. He will hold several bilateral meetings besides attending the Quad leaders summit and addressing United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) debate during his September 22-25 visit.
PM Modi's aircraft departed from Delhi after 11am; he will reach Washington at 6pm local time (3.30am IST).
"My visit to US would be an occasion to strengthen the Comprehensive Global Strategic Partnership with US, consolidate relations with our strategic partners - Japan and Australia - and take forward our collaboration on important global issues," the Prime Minister said before leaving for US.
He also said that the Quad summit will provide an opportunity to identify priorities for future engagements "based on our shared vision for Indo-Pacific region".
PM Modi is scheduled to meet US President Joe Biden on September 24. The two leaders will discuss the current regional security situation following the recent developments in Afghanistan.
"The two leaders are expected to discuss, how to bolster bilateral trade and investment ties, strengthen security collaboration, boost the strategic clean energy partnership. Explore new avenues in emerging technologies, through R&D innovation and industry linkages," foreign secretary Harsh V Shringla said on Tuesday.
A day before that, PM Modi is expected to meet US vice president Kamala Harris and hold bilateral meetings with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga - the members of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue - before a Quad summit.
This will be his first meeting with Biden after the latter became US President and his first ever in-person meeting with Harris.
PM Modi will also hold a meeting with top American business leaders the same day in order to drum up trade and investments as part of India's post-Covid recovery efforts.
The theme of this year's debate at UNGA is "Building resilience through hope to recover from Covid-19, rebuild sustainably, respond to planet's needs, respect people's rights and revitalise UN".
According to Shringla, PM Modi will speak on various important issues including cross-border terrorism, regional situation and United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reforms on September 25. "India's Amrit Mahotsav and the 75th-anniversary of the UN are coinciding. And on this occasion, the prime minister during his address, will definitely speak on UN reforms, about why it is needed and how it can be achieved," he said at a press conference on Tuesday. PM Modi last addressed UNGA in-person 2019.
Top leaders from across the world have already started converging in New York for UNGA high-level debate week. The UNGA meeting this year is being held in a hybrid format.
PM Modi will be accompanied by a high-level delegation consisting of external affairs minister S Jaishankar, National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval and other senior officials.