New Delhi: Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi travel to Singapore on 14-15 November 2018 at the invitation of Prime Minister of the Republic of Singapore, Mr. Lee Hsein Loong, to attend the ASEAN-India Breakfast Summit, 13th East Asia Summit (EAS) and Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) Summit. Singapore as the current Chair of ASEAN is hosting these Summits.
India-ASEAN ties have acquired renewed momentum since the enunciation of the “Act East Policy” by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2014 at the 12th ASEAN-India Summit and the 9th EAS in Myanmar. In January 2018, India hosted ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit to celebrate 25 years of Dialogue Partnership, 15 years of Summit Level interaction and 5 years of Strategic Partnership. In an unprecedented gesture, all ten ASEAN Leaders attended the Commemorative Summit and graced the Republic Day celebrations as Chief Guests. During the Summit, leaders reviewed the whole range of ASEAN-India cooperation and adopted the Delhi Declaration. The ASEAN-India Breakfast Summit at Singapore will provide an opportunity to review progress in the relationship.
The East Asia Summit is a premier leaders-led forum in the Indo-Pacific Region comprising of the ten ASEAN member states (i.e. Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam) and its eight dialogue partners- India, China, Japan, Republic of Korea, Australia, New Zealand, the United States and Russia. Since its inception in 2005, it has played an important role in reviewing political, security and economic developments in the Indo-Pacific region. This will be Prime Minister’s fifth engagement with EAS. At the 13th EAS, Prime Minister will join other leaders to discuss international developmental issues such as ICT, Smart Cities, Maritime Cooperation, Education, Finance, Food Security, Environment and Energy at both the Retreat and Plenary Sessions. They will also deliberate on global and regional issues of mutual interest.
Prime Minister attends the RCEP Summit to review the progress made on the negotiations presently underway to finalise RCEP. It may be mentioned that RCEP is the proposed free trade agreement presently being negotiated amongst 16 countries – ten ASEAN Member States, India, Australia, China, Japan, New Zealand and Republic of Korea. The agreement, once finalised, will cover 45% of world population, 40% of world trade and 34% of global GDP amounting to USD 21.3 trillion. Since the commencement of negotiations in 2012, considerable progress has been achieved during the 24 rounds of negotiations at experts’ level and 12 Ministerial Sessions. India remains committed to a forward looking and balanced outcome that results in a modern, comprehensive, high quality and mutually beneficial economic partnership.
During the visit, Prime Minister has a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Lee of Singapore. On the margins of these Summits, Prime Minister will hold bilateral meetings with other leaders.
India-ASEAN: As strategic partners, India and ASEAN enjoy close trade and economic relations. Trade between India and ASEAN stood at USD 81.33 billion in 2017-18 and constitutes 10.58% of India’s total trade. Exports to ASEAN countries constitute 11.28% of our total exports.
India and ASEAN have 30 dialogue mechanisms cutting across various sectors and operating at various levels which meet regularly. This includes a Summit and 7 Ministerial meetings in Foreign Affairs, Defence, Commerce, Agriculture, Environment, Renewable Energy and Telecommunications. Minister of State for External Affairs General (Retd) Shri V.K Singh attended the ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers Meeting and 8th EAS Foreign Ministers Meeting in Singapore in August 2018. Shri Suresh Prabhu, Union Minister of Commerce & Industry and Civil Aviation attended the 6th RCEP Trade Ministers’ Meeting and 6th East-Asia Economic Ministers’ Meeting (EAS-EMM) in September 2018. Defence Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman attended the 5th ADMM-Plus Meeting held in Singapore on 19th and 20th October, 2018. Minister of State for Tourism Shri K. J. Alphons attended ASEAN-India Tourism Ministers Meeting in Thailand in January 2018. Agriculture Minister Shri Radha Mohan Singh hosted ASEAN-India Agriculture and Forestry Ministerial Meeting in January 2018.