First Quad Summit | Quad leaders focus on ‘open and free’ Asia-Pacific at first summit

Focus on vaccines, climate change and emerging technologies makes the group a force for global good, says PM Modi

Members of the quadrilateral or “Quad” cadre will become “closer than ever,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday in his address to the group’s first-ever leadership summit.

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Addressing the virtual summit, Mr. Modi, US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison highlighted cooperation among member countries to defeat the global COVID-19 pandemic , with a joint vaccine partnership, and underscored the need for an “open” and “free” Asia-Pacific region.

“We are united by our democratic values ​​and our commitment to a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific. Our program, covering areas such as vaccines, climate change and emerging technologies, makes the Quad a force for global good. We will work together, more closely than ever to advance our common values ​​and promote a secure, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific, ”said Modi, who described the Quadrilateral Framework as an“ important pillar of stability in the region. “.

Member countries have agreed to ensure “equitable” access to vaccines to counter the pandemic. A joint statement, titled “The Spirit of the Quad,” said, “We will join forces to expand the production of safe, affordable and effective vaccines and equitable access to accelerate economic recovery and benefit global health.”

Addressing the meeting, President Biden stressed that the Indo-Pacific region should be governed in accordance with human rights.

“ Great program to come ”

“And we renew our commitment to ensure that our region is governed by international law, committed to upholding universal values ​​and free from coercion. We have a big agenda ahead of us, ”Biden said.

Addressing the meeting, Mr. Morrison introduced the Quad’s agenda for the near future and said, “We are coming together as leaders of nations to welcome what I believe will be a new dawn in the world. Indo-Pacific thanks to our gathering. ”

Prime Minister Suga acknowledged the new dynamism that Quad has received due to the meeting of key leaders of member countries.

Also read: Hindu profiles | Quad – The confluence of four powers and two seas

“With the four countries working together, I wish to advance firmly our cooperation to achieve a free and open Indo-Pacific, and make a tangible contribution to the peace, stability and prosperity of the region, including by overcoming the COVID-19 ”. he said.

The “Quad” was carried to the “summit,” Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said during a special briefing on the leaders’ summit.

“We are all committed to a free and open, inclusive, secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific. Today’s summit took a positive view of addressing contemporary issues with vaccine cooperation. The leaders agreed to strengthen peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region, ”said Mr. Shringla, who described the focus on vaccines as“ the most pressing ”.

He informed that Japan, the United States and Australia will fund the vaccine initiative which India has welcomed.

“We look forward to participating in the initiative wholeheartedly. During the discussion, the Vaccine Maitri initiative was fully appreciated, ”said Mr. Shringla.

The expert working group on vaccines, a working group on critical and emerging technologies and a working group on climate for technology, capacity building and climate finance were authorized during the summit. The foreign minister also said Quad leaders have agreed to meet in person over the next few months.

“The Quad is not opposed to anything, it represents something,” said Mr. Shringla, explaining that Quad is a values-based group that tries to address the need for vaccines, climate change and others. similar problems. He said the issue of the military takeover in Myanmar was raised during the discussion among the leaders.

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