NEW DELHI: The Indo-Pacific acquired another layer on Wednesday, with a much anticipated trilateral dialogue between India, Australia and France, a grouping that brings the first European power into the Indo-Pacific.
Foreign Secretary, Harsh Vardhan Shringla attended the first India-France-Australia trilateral dialogue with his counterparts, Francois Delattre from France and Frances Adamson from Australia on Wednesday.
An MEA readout said “The outcome oriented meeting was held with the objective of building on the strong bilateral relations that the three countries share with each other and synergising their respective strengths to ensure a peaceful, secure, prosperous and rules-based Indo-Pacific Region.”
The French ambassador to India, Emmanuel Lenain tweeted afterwards, the “trilateral talks (focused) on boosting cooperation for a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific.
Together we will uphold our values and interests!”
Indian officials said France and Australia are key partners for India in the region.
The discussions included the financial impact of the pandemic on the Indian Ocean region countries. “The increased salience of resilient and reliable supply chains was also discussed,” officials said. India, Australia and Japan recently inked an initiative to build resilient supply chains. France may join this initiative.
Maritime security is an area where all three countries have strong interests. The discussions today could yield initiatives in the areas of humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, maritime domain awareness, mutual logistics support, capacity building. The blue economy, marine biodiversity and environmental challenges such as marine pollution – was on the agenda of the meeting, sources said.
The MEA said, “The three countries also had an exchange on the priorities, challenges and trends in regional and global multilateral institutions, including the best ways to strengthen and reform multilateralism.”


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