Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Donald Trump: May build up on 2015 APAC vision


India and the USA are discussing an economic architecture for the Asia-Pacific region that would be a key item on the agenda for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s June 25-26 visit to Washington.

Asia-Pacific or Asia Pacific is the part of the world in or near the Western Pacific Ocean. The region varies in size depending on which context, but it typically includes much of East Asia, south Asia, Southeast Asia and Oceania.

The proposed Indo-US economic partnership for the Asia-Pacific region are not yet known, the plan would be an alternative for the region. This will be reflected during the Modi-Trump dialogue on June 26 as India hopes to emerge as a leading player in Asia or Indo-Pacific, and US holds on to its preeminent position in the region.

The Indo-US commitment to the Asia-Pacific region takes forward January 2015’s ‘Joint Strategic Vision for the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean’.

As the leaders of the world’s two largest democracies that bridge the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean region and reflecting our agreement that a closer partnership between the United States and India is indispensable to promoting peace, prosperity and stability in those regions, we have agreed on a Joint Strategic Vision for the region.

India and the United States are important drivers of regional and global growth. From Africa to East Asia, we will build on our partnership to support sustainable, inclusive development, and increased regional connectivity by collaborating with other interested partners to address poverty and support broad-based prosperity.

As part of these efforts, the United States welcomes India’s interest in joining the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, as the Indian economy is a dynamic part of the Asian economy.

Unites States former President Barack Obama’s visit to India in 2015 as the chief guest for 66th Republic Day celebrations has elevated Indo-US ties with larger implications for the region.

The two countries signed an agreement on “US-India Joint Strategic Vision for Asia Pacific and Indian Ocean Region” emphasising on increasing regional connectivity, freedom of navigation and collective security.

Since 2015, it may be recalled that India and Japan have also decided to put in place an economic and connectivity corridor from Asia to Africa. As part of this, an Indo-Japan initiative on Asia-Africa Growth Corridor was launched last month.

“From the role of a balancing power, India should emerge to play a pivotal role in driving prosperity and security in the Asia Pacific region,” suggested Bipul Chatterjee, Executive Director, CUTS International.

Also known as Consumer Unity & Trust Society, an non-profit organisation, CUTS focuses on providing the needy with access to equal rights, amenities, education, food and developmental opportunities.

According to experts, it would be ideal for PM Narendra Modi to engage President Donald Trump on joint economic partnership in the Asia Pacific region.

While India’s interest is clear, the PM and his delegation need to make it evident to  US  that such an arrangement fits in with the Trump vision of America First.

Engaging US on terrorism might prove to be a trickier task, given Trump’s position that Iran is the hub of global terrorism. This is one issue where the PM could use the G20 summit to push the case.

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