Wed, 21 Apr 2021

New Delhi [India], February 24 (ANI): In an important meet on Wednesday, senior officials of India, France and Australia discussed the next steps to be taken for furthering trilateral cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region.

According to a statement by the Ministry of External Affairs, "The three sides took stock of the progress made on the outcomes of the Foreign Secretary-level Trilateral Dialogue held in September 2020, including Maritime Security, Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR), Blue Economy, Protection of Marine Global Commons, Combatting Illegal, Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) Fishing and Cooperation in Multilateral Fora."The Indian side was led by Sandeep Chakravorty, Joint Secretary (Europe West) while the French side was led by Bertrand Lortholary, Director (Asia and Oceania) and the Australian side was led by Gary Cowan, First Assistant Secretary (North and South Asia Division) and John Geering, First Assistant Secretary (Europe and Latin America Division).

The first India-France-Australia Trilateral Dialogue was held virtually on September 9, 2020. The meeting was held with the objective of building on the strong bilateral relations that the three countries share with each other and synergising their respective strengths to ensure a peaceful, secure, prosperous and rules-based Indo-Pacific Region. The three sides agreed to hold the dialogue on an annual basis.

Indo-Pacific region has become the focal point for world powers, India is seen as a key regional player to counterbalance the dominance of China.

Quadrilateral, which is constituted with four big democracies -- India, US, Australia and Japan -- are also coordinating and playing a constructive role in the Indo-Pacific region. (ANI)

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