By Saroj Mohanty, Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei), Oct 10 IANS | 1 year ago

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Thursday reaffirmed India's commitment to building a regional architecture of economic and security cooperation in Asia, saying the need for such collective action and collaboration is more acute now because of the global economic uncertainty and political turmoil in some parts of the world.


He also said India was keen to enter into a dialogue and cooperation with like-minded countries on innovative means of financing infrastructure and stressed that building of physical infrastructure needs to go hand-in-hand with creation of soft infrastructure.

India welcomed Brunei's initiative to hold a meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Connectivity Coordinating Committee and the East Asia Summit later this year, he added.

"Asia has been a late starter in terms of building regional architectures of cooperation. We have embarked on this collective journey in large part because of the outstanding vision and leadership of ASEAN, first in pursuing ASEAN integration and then expanding it to the wider region.

"We will be successful if we adhere to the principles of unity, cooperation and integration that have guided ASEAN and if ASEAN centrality continues to shape the East Asia Summit processes. I reaffirm India's commitment to contribute to this process," the prime minister said at the 8th East Asia Summit in this Brunei capital.

The East Asia Summit (EAS) comprises the 10 ASEAN countries and their eight dialogue partners, including India, and has emerged as a premier forum for economic and security dialogue in the Asia-Pacific.

He said the need for collective action, cooperation and collaboration in the Asia Pacific region had never been felt more acutely as it is now.

"Global economic uncertainty and political turmoil in other parts of the world have impacted countries in our region equally. In addition, this vast region faces challenges arising not only from its diversity, but also from differences. Clearly, the potential of unprecedented prosperity for our peoples can be realized only by inculcating a cooperative temper," the prime minister said.

(Saroj Mohanty can be contacted at saroj.m@ians.in)

(Posted on 10-10-2013)