New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday (July 14) will participate in an I2U2 Summit, along with Israel PM Yair Lapid, UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and US President Joseph R. Biden. The first Leaders’ Summit of I2U2 will be held virtually today at 1600 hours. The I2U2 Grouping, conceptualized during the meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the four countries held on October 18 last year, is aimed to encourage joint investments in six mutually identified areas such as water, energy, transportation, and space, health, and food security .
Issuing a statement about the summit, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Tuesday said, “Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi will be participating in an I2U2 Summit, along with Prime Minister of Israel Yair Lapid, President of the UAE Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and President of the USA Joseph R. Biden.”
“Each country also has Sherpa-level interactions regularly to discuss the possible areas of cooperation,” said the MEA, adding that it intends to mobilize private sector capital and expertise to help modernize the infrastructure, low carbon development pathways for our industries, improve public health, and promote the development of critical emerging and green technologies.
Also read: PM Modi to participate in first I2U2 Summit on July 14
It further informed that the leaders will discuss the possible joint projects within the framework of I2U2 as well as the other common areas of mutual interest to strengthen the economic partnership in trade and investment in our respective regions and beyond. It further added that these projects could serve as a model for economic cooperation and offer opportunities for our businesspersons and workers.
US cites India’s strategic importance for I2U2, Quad
US President Joe Biden’s administration on Wednesday offered a full-throated justification for elevating ties with India, especially through multilateral platforms such as the newly launched I2U2 that the two countries form with Israel and the UAE, and the Quad with Japan and Australia. Biden called India the “most strategically consequential country in the Indo-Pacific”, said an IANS report.
India`s “longstanding” ties in West Asia and with Israel were reportedly cited as the reason for the Biden administration involving India in the I2U2, which will hold its first-ever summit in a four-way virtual meeting later today.
US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters accompanying Biden on Wednesday that a “significant announcement” is expected to be made at the I2U2 summit on food security, which, he had said earlier, would be the focus of the first-ever summit of the new body.
Citing India`s “longstanding” ties to the West Asia region and “a relationship over the years” with Israel, Sullivan went on to say, “just as the United States can play a critical and central role in helping deepen Israel`s integration into the region, India has a role to play in that as well”.
Ties between India and Israel have improved rapidly with bipartisan support on body sides after the two countries established full diplomatic ties in 1980. India`s ties with the Gulf region countries go a long way back, but it has made rapid progress with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Qatar in recent years. Notably, the new Quad for the West Asia region is Biden`s attempt to broaden US policy from its decades-long narrow focus on terrorism and wars.
(With Agency Inputs)