Prime Minister Narendra Modi, US President Joe Biden, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga came together on Friday evening for the first historic QUAD leaders summit. This incidentally was the first meeting between PM Modi and Biden ever since he took over as the US President.
Widely seen as part of concerted effort on the part of QUAD member nations to offset China’s growing economic prowess and military might, the virtual summit primarily focusses on a “free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region” as well as on ensuring an affordable and safe vaccine against coronavirus.
Speaking at the First Quad Leaders’ Virtual Summit. https://t.co/Ypom6buHxS
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 12, 2021
Financing agreements to augment manufacturing capacity for COVID-19 vaccines in India are also on agenda.
Addressing his American, Japanese and Australian counterparts, PM Modi said, “QUAD has come of age and will remain an important pillar of stability in the Indo-Pacific region.”
“We are united by our democratic values, and our commitment to a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific. Our agenda today – covering areas like vaccines, climate change and emerging technologies – makes the Quad a force for global good.” PM Modi added.
He also said, “I see this positive vision as an extension of India’s ancient philosophy of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ which regards the world as one family. We will work together closely as ever before for advancing shared values and promoting secular, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific.”
US President Joe Biden reiterated US’ commitment to work with QUAD nations. “”United States is committed to working with you and with all our allies in the region to achieve stability. This group is particularly important because it is dedicated to the practical solutions and concrete results,” he said.
“We are launching a new ambitious joint partnership that is going to boost vaccine manufacturing for the global benefit, strengthen vaccinations to benefit the entire Indo-Pacific,” Biden added.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said, “It is the Indo-Pacific that will now shape the destiny of the world in the 21st Century. As four leaders of great democracies in Indo-Pacific, let our partnership be an enabler of peace, stability and prosperity and to do so inclusively with many nations in the region.”