US to back India’s efforts to join APEC

27 Jan 2015


The United States has welcomed India's interest in joining the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum, saying that India's dynamic economy will bring more dynamism to the trade forum.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Barack Obama have agreed on a joint strategic vision for the Asia-Pacific region and closer partnership between the United States and India so as to promote peace, prosperity and stability in the region.

The leaders of the world's two largest democracies agreed to bridge the lose links in the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean region through closer partnership between the United States and India.

A new India-US Delhi Declaration of Friendship announced during Obama's Republic Day visit to India articulates tangible principles of an earlier Vision Statement by Obama and Modi, made in September last year, to guide ongoing efforts to advance mutual prosperity, a clean and healthy environment, greater economic cooperation, regional peace, security and stability for the larger benefit of humankind.

''India and the United States are important drivers of regional and global growth. From Africa to East Asia, we will build on our partnership to support sustainable, inclusive development, and increased regional connectivity by collaborating with other interested partners to address poverty and support broad-based prosperity,'' according to the Delhi Declaration.

Regional economic integration calls for accelerated infrastructure connectivity and economic development in a manner that links South, Southeast and Central Asia, including by enhancing energy transmission and encouraging free trade and greater people-to-people linkages, it said.

The two countries also vowed to safeguard maritime security and ensure freedom of navigation and overflights throughout the region, especially in the South China Sea.

''We call on all parties to avoid the threat or use of force and pursue resolution of territorial and maritime disputes through all peaceful means, in accordance with universally recognised principles of international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.''

The Delhi Declaration proposes to develop a roadmap that leverages the efforts of the two countries to increase ties among Asian powers, enabling both countries to better respond to diplomatic, economic and security challenges in the region.

The two sides also vowed to oppose terrorism, piracy, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction within or from the region.

We will also work together to promote the shared values that have made our countries great, recognizing that our interests in peace, prosperity and stability are well served by our common commitment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).

We commit to strengthening the East Asia Summit on its tenth anniversary to promote regional dialogue on key political and security issues, and to work together to strengthen it, the declaration added.

The two countries propose to strengthen regional dialogues, invest in making trilateral consultations with third countries in the region more robust, deepen regional integration, strengthen regional forums, explore additional multilateral opportunities for engagement, and pursue areas where the two can build capacity in the region that bolster long-term peace and prosperity.

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