In addition to these responsibilities as a coordinating country, the Indian government will contribute to other priority areas of the organization as needed, explained Foreign Minister Sabrahmanyan Jaishankar in the opening speech of the twenty-third IORA Council of Ministers held in Colombo, Sri Lanka. .
The Minister of External Affairs added that as the Vice President and member of the Troika, India’s priorities are clear in developing the Indian Ocean Community which is strong, prosperous, stable and stable.
After congratulating Sri Lanka on the start of its chairmanship in the 2023-25 period, Jaishankar noted that the Indian administration wants its members to be able to work closely together within the region and respond to those event beyond that environment.
It is important to maintain the Indian Ocean as a free, open and inclusive space based on the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), as the Constitution of the Seas, said the chancellor.
He added that his country will also act guided by its Neighborhood First policy, the vision known as SAGAR of security and growth for all in the region and its approach to the extended neighborhood and the Indo-Pacific.
The rules-based multilateral order, combined with sincere respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, remains the foundation for revitalizing the Indian Ocean as a strong community, he reiterated.
Jaishankar also described the challenges faced by the organization as development issues, the lack of strong connectivity, the burden of opaque and unsustainable debt created by unviable projects, the threats to the social fabric caused by extremism and fundamentalism, the dangers arising from terrorism, natural disasters and climate change.
Faced with these problems, IORA has the responsibility to play an important role in making the Indian Ocean a more fluid and cooperative space, he said.
The meeting of the Council of Ministers of IORA was preceded by the twenty-fifth Meeting of the Committee of Senior Officials, chaired by the Sri Lankan Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Aruni Wijewardane.
This two-day meeting concluded with recommendations, including the adoption of the Colombo Communiqué by members of the Council of Ministers.