New Delhi, Dec 03: External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday stated that across the world, there is unprecedented optimism about India's progress under Prime Minister Narendra Modi leadership.
"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 the Prime Minister's leadership; and, widespread expectation of effective and meaningful contribution from India for advancing peace, stability and prosperity in the world," Swaraj said, while speaking on the Prime Minister's recent visits abroad in the Lok Sabha.
"The Prime Minister has consistently advocated a proactive and innovative approach to foreign policy that is aligned with our Government's primary goal of accelerating national economic development. India needs access to capital, technology, resources, energy, markets and skills; a secure environment, a peaceful neighbourhood and a stable world; and, an open and stable global trading system," she added.
Swaraj further said that the government has speedily built and rebuilt partnerships with nations across the world since it came to power.
"In the past six months, we have moved with speed and resolve, rarely seen in Indian external engagement, to rebuild our partnerships across the world. We have set new milestones and reached new frontiers in India's foreign policy. The global response has been just as unparalleled," she said.
"During the course of these few months, Prime Minister Modi 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 added.
Stating that the focus of Prime Minister Modi's engagements abroad have been to promote cooperation, Swaraj said that he reiterated India's focus on infrastructure and manufacturing.
"At the heart of Prime Minister's engagements abroad has been efforts to promote cooperation on skill development; advanced medical research for diseases, like the agreement on research for malaria and TB with the United States; food security, such as our work with Australia on agricultural research for the benefit of our farmers; education, such as the agreement to collaborate with the United States on a new generation Indian Institute of Technology and to bring up to 1000 top university teachers from the United States annually to teach in India. Kyoto-Varanasi twinning arrangement, Ahmedabad-Guangzhou and Mumbai-Shanghai sister city agreements, or the agreement with the United States on developing three smart cities will provide impetus to our efforts to address the challenges and harness the opportunities of India's rapid urbanisation," she said.
Swaraj further said that the Prime Minister spoke of a vision of a stable and peaceful Asia.
"On every occasion, Prime Minister clearly articulated India's expectation of a stable and peaceful Asia and the surrounding ocean regions, predicated on universal acceptance of international law and norms and peaceful resolution of disputes. This also includes maritime security. Prime Minister also highlighted the emerging challenges of cyber security and space security," she said.
"India shares the international concerns on developments in West Asia, including with regard to Islamic State, and its global ramifications. At the same time, Prime Minister stressed that the global challenge of terrorism requires a comprehensive global strategy against all terrorism, without drawing distinction between terrorist groups and their supporters; willingness to isolate sponsors of terrorism and to help nations willing to fight it; a need for all those who believe in humanity to stand together; and, to make every effort to delink terrorism from religion. Our external engagement has helped deepen security cooperation with key partners," she added.
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