New Delhi: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, Wednesday, said the government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has generated unprecedented optimism in the world about India and its role in advancing peace, stability and prosperity in the world.
Making a statement in the Lok Sabha, Swaraj said, “As Members are aware, the outcome of the historic general election in India has rekindled international interest and restored global confidence in India. Indeed, at a time of uncertainty and turbulence in the world, the new Government in India, led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is seen as one of the positive developments in the world.”
“There is unprecedented optimism about India’s rapid progress under Prime Minister’s leadership; and, widespread expectation of effective and meaningful contribution from India for advancing peace, stability and prosperity in the world,” she added.
The External Affairs Minister stressed on India’s commitment to peaceful coexistence. She said, “Our approach is also rooted in our inheritance of a timeless tradition of global engagement and peaceful co-existence; and, dictated by the evolving imperatives of a globalised world.”
The Minister claimed that that the global response to India’s efforts to rebuild our partnerships across the world been unparalleled.
“Madam Speaker, since the last session of the Parliament, Prime Minister has visited Japan, the United States, Myanmar, Australia, Fiji and Nepal, besides participating in the United Nations General Assembly. We were honoured by the visits of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Chinese President Xi Jinping to India in September.”
“During the course of these few months, Prime Minister has met around 45 international leaders from every inhabited continent of the world. He has participated in India-ASEAN Summit, the East Asia Summit, the G20 Summit and the SAARC Summit – each of which is crucial to the future of our region, Asia and the world,” she said.
Swaraj also pointed out that PM Narendra Modi’s visit to Australia and Fiji was historic given the fact that it took 28 years for the Prime Minister of India to visit Australia and 33 years to visit Fiji.
“Prime Minister had the honour to address the Joint Session of the Australian Parliament – the first Indian Prime Minister do so – and became the first international leader to address Fiji’s recently elected Parliament under the new Constitution that restored democracy to the island country. Both addresses were extremely well received in the host countries and the world,” she said.
“Madam Speaker, our external engagement stands out not merely for the symbols of honour that he received, but also in terms of outcomes.”
“We have elevated our relations with Japan to a Special Strategic and Global Partnership; tangibly deepened our relations with China, while bringing more focus on outstanding issues; restored the momentum in our strategic partnership with the United States; charted a new course in our relations with Australia; and, translated a hesitant Look East Policy of the past into a proactive Act East Policy,” she said.
The Minister listed the agreements signed with different countries to boost trade relations, besides giving details about Prime Minister’s engagements with Asean, SAARC, G20 and other such multinational forums.
“Our engagement with the United States also helped secure our interests on food security in the WTO and advance the negotiations on the Doha Development Round of WTO. This initiative has contributed to strengthening the global trading regime, which is of direct interest to India, without in any way diluting our fundamental obligation to protect the interests of our poor,” Swaraj added.
“In the last few months, Prime Minister has laid out a clear vision of India’s role and place in the world; signalled willingness to assume leadership expected from the world’s largest democracy; and, demonstrated ability to turn commitments into action and convert opportunities into outcomes. We have revived important relationships that have long suffered from neglect. We have shown our will to speak clearly on our security interests and defend them robustly. Our pursuit of global aspirations has been accompanied by global engagement,” she said.
“There is a new global confidence in India. In turn, Prime Minister’s visits have advanced our pursuit of a secure and stable environment that we need to accomplish our development goals. It will also contribute in a significant measure to our mission of accelerating economic growth, boosting investment, creating jobs and transforming the quality of life of our people,” she said.