India respects your priorities and feels proud to be your development partner.
This was the message from India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi to representatives of the Pacific Islands Forum during the Forum for India-Pacific Islands Co-operation (FIPIC) in PNG.
Mr Modi said India, like the Pacific, believed in multilateralism.
“We support a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific. We respect the sovereignty and integrity of all countries. Whether it’s humanitarian assistance or your development, you can count on India as a reliable partner. Our perspective is based on human values.”
Through its outreach, India has already organised a number of programs in the Pacific, including setting up a waste management project in Nauru and provision of seeds for cyclone-affected farmers in Fiji.
Mr Modi repeated India’s readiness to share its capabilities and experiences with Pacific island countries.
“Whether it’s digital technology or space technology, whether it’s health security or food security, whether it’s climate change or environmental conservation, we are with you in every way.”
Meanwhile, he was also conferred the Companion of the Order of Fiji Medal, the highest possible accolade Fiji bestows.
In response, Mr Modi said it was an honour to have received the medal.
He also highlighted that the recognition further solidified and demonstrated the strong bilateral ties and people-to-people links shared between India and Fiji.