The 16th Ministerial Meeting of Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD) was held in Doha, Qatar. Gen. (Dr) V.K. Singh (Retd), Minister of State for External Affairs led the Indian delegation. Earlier, Manish, Joint Secretary (South) attended the Senior Officers’ Meeting (SOM) held on April 30.
In his address at the Asia Cooperation Dialogue, the Minister expressed profound sorrow for April 21 terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka and emphasized the need for the world community to expeditiously adopt the UN Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (UNCCIT). This was expected as most Indians were left shocked at the brutal terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan soil which reminded many found similar to the violent Mumbai terror attacks that left the world shocked in 2008.
Emphasizing on the theme “Partners in Progress”, he underlined India’s desire for working cooperatively with all Asia Cooperation Dialogue Member States in line with the Government of India’s approach of “Collective Efforts, Inclusive Growth”. He further stressed on the need for concerted efforts across Asia to ensure energy security in the region for sustainable development and poverty eradication by pursuing non-polluting renewable sources such as solar power, and urged the Member States to join the International Solar Alliance launched in November 2015.
The Minister also underscored the keenness of India, being a founder member of ACD, to play an enabling role for ensuring collective action on various objectives and projects of ACD in order to promote the pursuit of stability, peace, growth and prosperity. He talked about food security, adequate access to fresh water, research and innovation, financial inclusion and sought enhanced collaboration from the member states in these sectors.