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11th Delhi Dialogue; 6th Indian Ocean Dialogue and associated events (December 13-14, 2019)

December 10, 2019

The Ministry of External Affairs will host the 6th Indian Ocean Dialogue and Delhi Dialogue XI at the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra in New Delhi on December 13 and 14, 2019. For the first time, these two Track 1.5 dialogues—which are key elements of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), and the India-ASEAN calendars respectively—will be held consecutively, and on similar, Indo-Pacific themes. The 6th Indian Ocean Dialogue takes place on December 13, and the theme is "Indo-Pacific: Re-imagining the Indian Ocean through an Expanded Geography”. It is being organized with the assistance of the Indian Council for World Affairs. Delhi Dialogue XI will start on the evening of December 13, and will run through to the evening of December 14. The theme for this year’s Delhi Dialogue is "Advancing Partnership in Indo-Pacific”, and is being organized with the assistance of the Research and Information System (RIS) for Developing Countries.

2. The themes of each of these events are intended to build upon the growing recognition of the Indo-Pacific concept in strategic and academic circles within this region and beyond. The announcement of an ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific at the ASEAN Summit in June 2019, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s enunciation of India’s vision of the Indo-Pacific at the Shangri-La Dialogue in June 2018 are important drivers of MEA’s current effort to locate the Indian Ocean Dialogue and the Delhi Dialogue within the concept of a free, open, inclusive and rules-based Indo-Pacific. Themes for each of the sessions of both of these dialogues have been carefully selected to emphasize key conceptual elements of the Indo-Pacific concept, as indicated in the attached outline programme.

3. The two events will intersect in the evening of December 13 in a joint Ministerial session, at which the Guests of Honour include H.E Mme Retno Marsudi, Foreign Minister of the Republic of Indonesia, and H.E. AK Abdul Momin, Foreign Minister of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. The two Ministers will deliver keynote addresses at this session, in the presence of External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar. The valedictory address of these events will be delivered by the External Affairs Minister on December 14, 2019. Other distinguished guests include Special Envoys, Deputy Ministers and senior officials from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Thailand, as well as the Deputy Secretary General of ASEAN at the Delhi Dialogue as well as the Foreign Secretaries of Seychelles and Maldives, the IORA Secretary General and senior officials from South Africa and UAE, at the Indian Ocean Dialogue.

4. A number of highly-regarded scholars will participate in these two dialogues, along with officials from ASEAN and IORA nations. Academics and scholars are expected from policy institutes, universities and international institutions in Australia, Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Japan, Sri Lanka, Russia, South Africa, Bangladesh, UAE, Oman, Iran, Mauritius, USA, Kenya and India.

5. Prior to both of these dialogues, MEA will also host the first Expert Group Meeting on Academics, Science and Technology of IORA—an official mechanism of the IORA that is intended to promote structured cooperation on academics, science and technology among the 22 member states of IORA. This inter-Governmental meeting will be run by the Department of Science and Technology of India, and is expected to produce a first Work Plan for the Group, to enhance tangible cooperation among the diverse members of the Indian Ocean community.

6. In parallel with this Expert Group Meeting, MEA will also host on December 12, the 6th Indian Ocean Rim Academic Group (IORAG) meeting, which is a Track-II mechanism with an advisory and catalytic role regarding policy-making among IORA members. Once again, the Indian Council for World Affairs will assist with both of theseinter-Governmental processes.

7. Through these processes, India intends to emphasize its open and inclusive approach to fostering a cooperative, free, and rules-based Indo-Pacific domain, in which all nations and their aspirations for development have equal space to find expression.

New Delhi
December 09, 2019
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