Zee Media Burea/Ajith Vijay Kumar
Bandar Seri Begawan (Brunei)/New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday called for collective action, cooperation and collaboration in Asia to overcome the challenges posed global economic uncertainty and political turmoil in parts of the world.
Speaking at 8th East Asia Summit, Dr Singh said, “We gather in Brunei when the need for collective action, cooperation and collaboration in the Asia Pacific region has never been felt more acutely. 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.”
Dr Singh said Asia has the potential for unprecedented prosperity but that goal can be realized only by inculcating a cooperative temper among the countries in the region. “The East Asia Summit is a forum that is, in my view, ideally placed to help us realize our common goals for advancing security and prosperity in a cooperative framework,” he said.
The Prime Minister said that India welcomes dialogue and cooperation on innovative means of financing infrastructure requirements of the region.
“Building of physical infrastructure needs to go hand-in-hand with creation of soft infrastructure along the connectivity corridors. We welcome Brunei Darussalam’s initiative to hold a meeting between the ASEAN Connectivity Coordinating Committee and the East Asia Summit later this year,” he said.
Dr Singh also made it point to thank countries in East Asia for their support for the establishment of Nalanda University in Bihar as an international institution of excellence, adding that academic sessions at the university will begin next year.
The Indian Prime Minister also highlighted the need to maintain stable maritime environment in the region.
“We should reaffirm the principles of maritime security, including the right of passage and unimpeded commerce, in accordance with international law, and peaceful settlement of maritime disputes,” he said.
Dr Singh also reaffirmed India’s commitment to contribute to the ASEAN dialogue process.