The QUAD leaders of four countries- India, Japan, USA, and Australia attended the first online virtual summit of the QUAD group of nations, which is viewed as part of the efforts to balance China’s growing military and its assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific region. QUAD leaders vowed to secure the Indo-Pacific region.
This was the first time that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden met at a public event after Mr. Biden took office. Joe Biden stated that ”a free and open Indo-Pacific is essential to each of our futures”.
During his opening remarks, Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue – QUAD has ‘come of age’ and will remain an important pillar of stability in the region. The leaders further discussed China’s growing aggression in the region during the coronavirus pandemic. As per the sources, the ongoing tensions between India and China and Chinese intrusion at LAC were also discussed n the meeting.
Indian Foreign Secretary Harsh Singhla stated that all contemporary issues were taken up at the QUAD meeting. the meeting also focussed on the centrality of ASEAN, post-pandemic recovery, and maritime security. Briefing the reporters about the Summit, Mr. Singhla said that it was decided that India’s manufacturing capacity is something that is going to be leveraged to make US vaccines. he further said that the financing for the creation of additional capacities shall come from the USA and Japan while Australia will contribute to the delivery matters and logistics.
The Ministry of External Affairs also released a report on March 12 titled QUAD Leaders Joint Statement- ‘The Spirit of the QUAD’.
The China concern
While Mr. Hrash Singhla underlined that there were discussions on regional issues but refrained from revealing any details over the matter as they were ‘confidential’, Sources said that all the countries had a sympathetic view towards India over the LAC tensions with China. the leaders also discussed global and regional issues of shared interest and vowed to ensure security and counter the threats in the Indo-pacific region.