India - East Asia

Chronology from Jan 2022 to Dec 2022

: Jaishankar visits New York for events related to India’s December presidency of the UNSC. The three priorities are: “New Orientation for Reformed Multilateralism” [NORMS]; “Global Approach to Counter Terrorism – Challenges and Way Forward”; “Group of Friends for Accountability for Crimes against Peacekeepers”.

: India-Malaysia joint military annual training exercise “Harimau Shakti -2022” is conducted at Pulai, Kluang, Malaysia.

: India-Australia bilateral training exercise “AUSTRA HIND 22” between contingents of the Indian Army and the Australian Army takes place at Mahajan Field Firing Ranges (Rajasthan). This is the first exercise in the series of AUSTRA HIND with participation of all arms and services contingent from both armies.

: Indian DM Singh visits Cambodia to attend ASEAN Defense Ministers Plus Meeting and participate in the first India-ASEAN Defense Ministers meeting to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of India-ASEAN relations in 2022, which has been designated as “ASEAN-India Friendship Year.”

: Indian Naval Ships Shivalik and Kamorta, during their stay at Busan, Korea participate in multiple activities with the RoK Navy that include official and social interactions, cross-deck visits and sports fixtures.

: Modi holds bilateral meeting with Singapore’s PM Lee Hsien Loong during which they reviewed the Strategic Partnership and various “regular high level Ministerial and institutional interactions, including the inaugural session of the India-Singapore Ministerial Roundtable, held at New Delhi in September 2022.

: Modi and Australian PM Albanese hold a bilateral meeting on the G20 sidelines during which they “expressed satisfaction at the excellent state of relations between the two countries under the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and the high-level interactions taking place on a regular basis between India and Australia.”

: Modi has bilateral meeting with Biden on the G20 sidelines during which the two leaders “reviewed the continuing deepening of the India – US strategic partnership including cooperation in future oriented sectors like critical and emerging technologies, advanced computing, artificial intelligence, etc. [and] expressed satisfaction about the close cooperation between India and US in new groupings such as the Quad, I2U2, etc.”

: Modi holds trilateral meeting with Presidents Biden and Widodo on G20 sidelines.

: PM Modi travels to Indonesia for the G20 Summit on the sidelines of which he holds a number of meetings with Indo-Pacific leaders.

: India’s Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar, accompanied by External Affairs Minister Jaishankar, visits Cambodia to attend the ASEAN-India Commemorative Summit on Nov. 12, the 17th East Asia Summit, bilateral engagements with the Cambodian leadership including the Cambodian king, prime minister, president of senate, and other bilateral meetings.

: India’s Chief of Naval Staff Adm. R. Hari Kumar, makes official visit to Japan for the International Fleet Review (IFR) hosted by the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) off Yokosuka in commemoration of the 70th Anniversary of its formation.

: India’s navy hosts the 29th edition of the Singapore-India Maritime Bilateral Exercise (SIMBEX) at Visakhapatnam.

: Mongolia’s Defense Minister Saikhanbayar Gursed visits India for 12th DefExpo in Gandhinagar, Gujarat and has a bilateral meeting on the sidelines with Indian DM Singh.

: India’s Defense Minister addresses the 18th Heads of Asian Coast Guard Agencies Meeting HACGAM which the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) is hosting.

: Jaishankar visits Canberra and Sydney Australia for the 13th Foreign Ministers’ Framework Dialogue (FMFD) along with counterpart Penny Wong. He also meets Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Richard Marles. EAM described the interactions with Australia as “a very, very useful, very productive, very comfortable…” though he said there is “great potential in terms of giving a greater, I would say, quality to our bilateral partnership.”

: Jaishankar visits New Zealand. A statement prior to the visit notes that this was his first visit to New Zealand where he would hold meetings with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta “to discuss and review the entire gamut of our relations.”

: India’s Chief of the Naval Staff (CNS), Adm. R Hari Kumar, visited New Zealand where he held discussions with Rear Adm. David Proctor, chief of Navy, RNZN. An Agreement on White Shipping Information Exchange was signed during this visit.

: Republic of Korea (ROK) Navy Cruise Training Task Group consisting of two naval ships, ROKS Hansando and ROKS Daecheong arrived in Chennai on a three-day visit.

: Modi travels to Japan for the state funeral of former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo. He holds a brief bilateral meeting with Kishida during which they “renewed their commitment towards further strengthening the India-Japan Special Strategic and Global Partnership, and in working together in the region and in various international groupings and institutions.”

: Jaishankar visits Washington for bilateral meetings with counterpart Secretary of State Antony Blinken, senior members of the US administration, US business leaders, a roundtable focused on S&T and interaction with the Indian diaspora.

: Quad Foreign Ministers Meeting on the sidelines of the 77th UNGA. Quad countries promised “to deepen Quad multilateral cooperation in support of advancing a free and open Indo-Pacific, which is inclusive and resilient” and agreed their “vision is for a region where the rules-based international order is upheld, and where the principles of freedom, rule of law, democratic values, peaceful settlement of disputes, sovereignty, and territorial integrity are respected.” They also signed guidelines to operationalize the Quad Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Partnership for the Indo-Pacific, looked forward to the counter-terrorism tabletop exercise being hosted by Australia later in 2022, and issued a statement on ransomware which calls on states to take reasonable steps to address ransomware operations emanating from their territory, and reiterated the Quad’s commitment to supporting regional partners’ efforts to improve their maritime security and domain awareness.

: PM Modi travels to the US for a bilateral summit with President Biden at the White House, a Quad leaders’ summit in New York, and UNGA meetings. He also held other Indo-Pacific related bilateral leaders’ meetings. This is the first in-person meeting between Biden and Modi.

: Jaishankar participates in the meeting of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) Ministers of Foreign Affairs and International Relations, including Minister of Foreign Affairs of China Wang Yi. A press statement issued at the end of consultations did not mention Ukraine but included as a third bullet acknowledgement of “the annual UNGA resolution on ‘Combating glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fueling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance’.”

: Jaishankar participates in the Foreign Ministers of the G4 countries (Brazil, India, Germany, and Japan) meeting to exchange views on reform of the UN Security Council. This meeting is another opportunity for a meeting between EAM and Japan’s FM Hayashi.

: Jaishankar visits the US for what a pre-departure statement describes as “plurilateral meetings of the Quad, IBSA, BRICS, India—Presidency Pro Tempore CELAC, India-CARICOM and other trilateral formats, such as India-France-Australia, India-France-UAE and India-Indonesia-Australia…and bilateral meetings with Foreign Ministers of the G20 and UNSC member states…” He also attends a high-level meeting of members of the L.69 group and other invited like-minded countries on “Reinvigorating Multilateralism and Achieving Comprehensive Reform of the UN Security Council.”

: Jaishankar and DM Singh visit Japan for the second iteration of 2+2 talks (the inaugural 2+2 was held in 2019) as well as a separate Defense Ministerial Meeting and Foreign Ministers’ Strategic Dialogue with Japanese counterparts Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa and Defense Minister Hamada Yasukazu.

: India’s DM Songh makes first-ever visit to Mongolia including bilateral talks with Mongolia’s Minister of Defense Lt Gen. Saikhanbayar and calls on President of Mongolia U. Khurelsukh and chairman of the State Great Khural of Mongolia G Zandanshatar. An official press release describes the visit as “[g]iving push to strategic partnership with East Asian countries.” Specific outcomes included inauguration of a Cyber Security Training Centre and laying of a foundation stone of the India-Mongolia Friendship School, both built with Indian assistance.

: Jaishankar visits Thailand to co-chair the 9th Meeting of India-Thailand Joint Commission (JCM) with Don Pramudwinai, deputy prime minister and minister of Foreign Affairs. He gives an address on “India’s Vision of the Indo-Pacific” at Chulalongkorn University. The JCM was preceded by the Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) on Aug. 16 where the two sides held discussions on areas of bilateral cooperation along with regional and multilateral issues. MoUs were signed Health and Medical Research Cooperation and Cooperation & Collaboration on Broadcasting.

: Jaishankar visits Cambodia for ASEAN-India ministerial meeting to review India-ASEAN relations.

: India’s DM Singh holds video conference with Malaysian counterpart Senior Defense Minister of Malaysia YB Dato ‘Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein on ways to enhance cooperation under the Malaysia India Defense Cooperation Meeting (MIDCOM) framework.

: Australia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Defense Richard Marles visits India and meets Defense Minister Singh to review defense cooperation and explore new initiatives to further strengthen bilateral engagements.

: A Special ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers’ Meeting celebrating the 30th Anniversary of ASEAN-India Dialogue Relations is held in Cambodia following which a joint statement is released.

: India’s Defense Minister Rajnath Singh visits Vietnam to hold talks with his Vietnamese counterpart Gen. Phan Van Giang on the historic occasion of 50 years of establishment of India-Vietnam Diplomatic relations and 75 years of India’s Independence.

: Modi attends a Quad Leaders Meeting “to review progress of Quad initiatives and Working Groups, identify new areas of cooperation and provide strategic guidance and vision for future collaboration.” In an opening statement at the Quad, Modi states that the Quad’s scope has become broader, its format more effective, it is giving new energy and enthusiasm to the democratic forces giving a boost to a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region,” and will further strengthen the image of the Quad as a ‘Force for Good’. The Quad country leaders also issue a joint statement.

: In Japan, Modi has a bilateral meeting with President Biden following up on an April 11 virtual meeting to develop the India-US Comprehensive Strategic Global Partnership. Of particular security significance was the launch of the “India-U.S. Initiative on Critical and Emerging Technologies. Modi “welcomed the launch of Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF) and stated that India is ready to work closely with all partner countries to shape a flexible, and inclusive IPEF taking into consideration the respective national circumstances.”

: In Japan, Modi has a bilateral meeting with Australia’s Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. Modi tweeted that “India’s Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with Australia is robust and benefits not only the people of our nations but also the world…We discussed ways to add even greater momentum across key sectors.”

: PM Modi travels to Tokyo for a bilateral summit with PM Kishida and to attend the Quad Leaders Summit. The two prime ministers announce no new major security-related initiatives, saying only that they “agreed to further enhance bilateral security and [defense] cooperation, including in the area of defense manufacturing… [and] …concurred that the next 2+2 Foreign and Defense Ministerial Meeting may be held in Japan at the earliest.” A particular focus of PM Modi’s Japan visit is for commercial relations “to realize 5 trillion yen [approximately $40 to $42 billion] in public and private investment and financing over the next five years from Japan to India” as agreed during an earlier India-Japan summit in March.

: India and Australia’s Maritime Patrol Reconnaissance Aircraft (MPRA) conduct Coordinated Operations in Anti-Submarine Warfare and surface surveillance off Darwin, northern Australia. A press statement notes that the “maritime waters between Indonesia and Northern Australia is an area of mutual interest to both countries, being a gateway into the Indian Ocean Region.”

: Jaishankar visits Washington, DC for 4th India-US 2+2 bilateral dialogue. PM Modi and President Biden hold a virtual meeting during the EAM’s visit. The joint statement of the 2+2 dialogue opens with a section on “Global Partnership and Indo-Pacific Cooperation.”

: India and Australia’s navies hold 14th round of staff talks in New Delhi at which they “agree[…] to enhance collaboration and interoperability towards ensuring maritime security in IOR [Indian Ocean Region].”

: Gen. M.M. Naravane, India’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) visits Singapore to discuss avenues for enhancing India-Singapore defense relations.

: Prime Minister Modi and Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison hold virtual summit leading to a joint statement and the signing of multiple agreements

: Japan’s Prime Minister Kishida Fumio visits India for 14th annual India-Japan Summit—the first since October 2018—to advance the “Special Strategic and Global Partnership.” PM Modi gives a press statement which makes no reference to Japan-India security ties, instead focusing on commercial/economic issues and cooperation on energy. Of the MoUs and agreements announced during the visit most focused on commercial and economic development and only one was security related—on cooperation in cybersecurity. The joint statement issued by two leaders opened with security and defense cooperation, noting that they “appreciated the significant progress made in security and defense cooperation and reaffirmed their desire to further deepen it.” The joint statement makes no mention of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine the previous month.

: Australia’s Lt Gen Richard Maxwell Burr, Chief of Army, visits India for talks with India’s chief of Army Staff, chief of Naval Staff, chief of Air Staff and other senior military officers “regarding measures for enhancing [defense] cooperation between both armies.”

: Australia’s vice admiral, chief of navy, Michael Noonan, visits India, including the HQ of Eastern Naval Command, to participate in Indian Navy’s biennial multilateral naval exercise MILAN 22, be a guest speaker during the International Maritime Seminar of MILAN, and hold talks with Indian navy counterparts about “avenues to strengthen the growing cooperation between the two nations and navies.” A press statement described the visit as “an important event in the continued and regular dialogue between Indian Navy and the Royal Australian Navy to cement and strengthen their comprehensive global strategic partnership further” and build on the ‘Joint Guidance for Australia—India Navy to Navy Relationship’ signed in August 2021.”

: Jaishankar makes his first visit to the Philippines as foreign minister to review relations with counterpart Teodoro L. Locsin Jr., secretary of Foreign Affairs. The meeting occurs two weeks after BrahMos Aerospace Private Limited (BAPL), a joint venture with India’s Defense Research and Development Organization, signed a contract with the Philippines Department of National Defense to supply shore-based anti-missile system. A readout notes agreement “to further work towards strengthening engagement in counter-terrorism and defense and maritime security, covering defense capabilities as well as military training and capacity building.”

: Jaishankar attends the 4th Quad Foreign Ministers’ meeting in Melbourne Australia and makes remarks at a press briefing after a joint statement is issued.

: India’s External Affairs Minister (EAM) Dr. S. Jaishankar visits Australia to co-chair the 12th Foreign Ministers’ Framework Dialogue with counterpart, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne. The two launch the inaugural Foreign Ministers’ Cyber Framework Dialogue (FMCFD) and assess the progress made towards implementation of the India-Australia Framework Arrangement on Cyber and Cyber-Enabled Critical Technology Cooperation and the subsidiary Plan of Action signed in June 2020.

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