Jaishankar’s meetings with CARICOM, BRICS and other groupings at UNGA significant: Expert | The Financial Express

Jaishankar’s meetings with CARICOM, BRICS and other groupings at UNGA significant: Expert

According to the Ministry of External Affairs the minister will also be participating in the High-Level Meeting of the L.69 Group on “Reinvigorating Multilateralism and Achieving Comprehensive Reform of the UN Security Council”.

Jaishankar’s meetings with CARICOM, BRICS and other groupings at UNGA significant: Expert
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar with India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador, Ruchira Kamboj External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar with India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador, Ruchira Kamboj. (Photo source:Twitter/@ruchirakamboj)

Keeping in line with India’s commitment to reformed multilateralism, during the 77th session of United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), External affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar is all set for several rounds of meetings with his counterparts from participating nations.

During his 11 day visit, he will be hosting and participating in ministerial meetings with various groupings including the G4 (India, Brazil, Germany and Japan), G20 and UNSC member states, QUAD, IBSA (India, Brazil & South Africa), BRICS (Brazil, India, Russia, China & South Africa), CARICOM, India-France-Australia, India-France-UAE, India Indonesia Australia & India – Presidency Pro Tempore CELAC.

According to the Ministry of External Affairs the minister will also be participating in the High-Level Meeting of the L.69 Group on “Reinvigorating Multilateralism and Achieving Comprehensive Reform of the UN Security Council”.

India & UNSC

The two year tenure of India at the UN SC is going to end later this year in December when India will be the President of the Council, added MEA.

Why L69?

A group of developing countries including Latin America and Caribbean, Africa, the Pacific and Asia form this grouping.  And this important bloc has a common cause of staying united and that is to achieve comprehensive and lasting reform of the UN Security Council. There are 42 current members of this bloc.

“The meeting with CARICOM should be seen in context of India’s attempt to be more involved and have a greater presence in the region. Given India’s Diaspora linkages with the Caribbean region as well as the recent discovery of oil and gas resources, it is in India’s favour to have better relations with the Caribbean. At the same time the Caribbean also benefits from India’s expertise in IT and ITES, agricultural products, pharmaceuticals, defense and technology etc.,” opines Dr   Aparaajita Pandey, PhD in Latin American Studies.

CARICOM Countries

This group of countries in the developing world is considered to be one of the most advanced regional institutions.

Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, Trinidad and Tobago, Suriname, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Saint Kitts and Nevis, together form CARICOM.

Following the first India-CARICOM summit which was hosted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of UNGA in September 2019, there have been various levels of visits and interactions with the countries in the region and India has been participating actively in development projects.

Dr Jasishankar will have a ministerial level meeting with the ministers of 15 countries of this region and the focus is expected to be on energy security, agriculture and economic as well as environmental issues.

According to a 2011 Exim Bank report, India imports gold, scrap, metalliferous ores, and most importantly Crude petroleum, from these CARICOM countries.

As has been reported earlier, India and the CARICOM Development Fund (CDF) in 2019 have signed a Contribution Agreement on January 19th, in Paramaribo Suriname. This fund provides for a grant allocation of US$ 1 million to the CDF’s capital fund and India became the latest to become the International Development partner to have established formal ties with CDF.

These funds are used to support the implementation of the CDF’s mandate to provide financial and technical assistance to regions, disadvantaged countries and sectors in the CARICOM. The projects are categorized as: Concessional financing for SMEs; investment and resilience-building; Human Resource Development, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency; and Sector-specific physical infrastructure to facilitate private sector trade.

India-US

From September 25-28 Dr Jaishankar will be in Washington DC where he will have bilateral meetings with his US counterpart Secretary of State Antony Blinken; business leaders, senior members of the US Administration and later interact with the Indian Diaspora. The focus of these meetings will be on reviewing the multifaceted bilateral agenda and also to discuss global and regional issues and to further consolidate the India-US Strategic partnership.

IBSA

In view of the Chinese presence growing across global waters when the IBSA meets the talks focus on naval cooperation, maritime security, energy and food security. These member countries have together agreed to cooperate in fighting cross border terrorism, ensuring security of sea lines of communication, sustainable exploitation of marine resources, including fishing.

Significance of the meetings: Expert view

“The Indian External Affairs Minister, Dr S Jaishankar is on a 10-day long visit and his schedule is packed with meetings that hold significance for India and its foreign policy going forward,” Dr Aparaajita Pandey, Asst Prof in Dept of Defense and Strategic Studies, Amity University, NOIDA.

According to her, “It might be unnerving at first glance but upon quieter reflection one can realise that these meetings require closer inspection. While the dialogue between India and China was quite limited and did not match the expectations that some might have had at the SCO, Jaishankar would once again come face to face with the Chinese counterpart during the upcoming meeting of the BRICS nations.”

Dr Pandey says, “This trend continues when India meets with IBSA and would be meeting the Brazilian foreign minister once again after the meeting with BRICS. While both BRICS and IBSA have a commonality of some members who are also members of the UNGA; it is important to notice that BRICS and IBSA do not have the same function. While BRICS is coming up as an alternative to established norms of global economics from the global south, IBSA is now being revived as a forum for three nations spread across three continents with an aim for greater South – South cooperation.”

Get live Share Market updates and latest India News and business news on Financial Express. Download Financial Express App for latest business news.

X