India on Saturday has emphasised the need for stakeholders to invest more time and effort to ensure that the Indo-pacific remains a free, open, and inclusive platform to provide important collective initiatives in the region. While delivering a concluding speech at the 11th Delhi Dialogue, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said that for an open and inclusive Indo-Pacific platform, it is in everyone's responsibility to "ensure that the doors remain open to cooperation on as wide a platform as possible".
"While policy-makers, diplomats and academics congregate to iterate ideas, concepts, and strategies, there is equally a need to ensure that we do not get mired in a potentially misleading quest to find a complete identity of views on every element of every concept," Jaishankar said.
"On the contrary: the more important task at hand is to invest time and effort to use the Indo-Pacific as an open, free and inclusive platform to deliver tangible and meaningful cooperative initiatives. For this to happen, it is in everyone's interest to ensure that the doors remain open to cooperation on as wide a platform as possible," the minister added.
S Jaishankar pointed out that India is amongst the first few countries to welcome the ASEAN outlook on the Indo-Pacific. Noting that the Indo-Pacific region naturally adjoins with the western ocean in the Gulf, the Island nations of the Arabian Sea and Africa, the minister said that India's approach to the concept helped them recognise that both the Indo-Pacific and everything lying in between should ideally have their own evolved approach to the Indo-Pacific.
Jaishankar said that the Indo-pacific is "not tomorrow's forecast, but yesterday's reality". In his speech, Jaishankar also raised issues about plastic pollution and invited the ASEAN members to create high-quality infrastructure together and progress steadily. The 11th Delhi Dialogue focused on "Advancing Partnership in Indo-Pacific", and was organised under the assistance of the Research and Information System for Developing Countries in the national capital. The dialogues were aimed at a cooperative approach for a free and systematic Indo Pacific region.
Earlier in June 2018, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had highlighted India's vision for the Indo-Pacific while attending at the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, stating that "Inclusiveness, openness and ASEAN centrality and unity lie at the heart of the new Indo-Pacific."