Days after BrahMos deal, S Jaishankar to visit Philippines on February 13-15

Written By: Sidhant Sibal WION
NEW DELHI Updated: Feb 07, 2022, 01:53 PM(IST)

(File photo) India's External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar Photograph:( PTI )

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The last foreign ministerial visit to the country was in 2013, with the visit of the then EAM Salman Khurshid.

India's external affairs minister, Dr S Jaishankar, will be on a visit to the Philippines from February 13th to the 15th.

The visit comes after India and the Philippines signed a $374.96 million dollar deal last month, under which New Delhi will export BrahMos missiles to the ASEAN country. The biggest defence export deal India has ever signed was conceptualised in 2017.

The coastal defence regiment of the Philippine marines will be the primary employer of the missiles. 

As part of the agreement, India would deliver three batteries and train the operators and maintainers.

During the visit, EAM will hold talks with his Philippine counterpart, Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teddy Locsin Jr. A call with President Rodrigo Duterte is also expected to happen.

The last foreign ministerial visit to the country was in 2013, with the visit of the then EAM Salman Khurshid.

Then, in 2017, the Minister of State for External Affairs, Gen. V. K. Singh, paid a visit to the country.PM Modi visited the country in 2017 while President Duterte visited India in 2018 for the Republic Day celebrations.

The visit of EAM to the Philippines comes after his visit to Australia, which begins on February 10th. EAM visits Australia for the Quad in persons foreign ministers' meet, a visit that will have a major bilateral component as well.

MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said in the weekly presser, "The next meeting is expected to be held later this month in Melbourne. We hope to share an update on this with you soon.

The last in person quad meet was in 2020 in Tokyo, followed by a virtual meet in February 2021. 

EAM is expected to call on other top Australian government officials and meet the diaspora as well. Key engagements include his meeting with US Secretary of State Blinken.

"The Secretary will meet with Indian Minister of External Affairs Jaishankar to reaffirm our vitally important strategic partnership," the US State Department's Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Assistant Secretary Daniel Kritenbrink said last week.

The Quad FMs' meeting happens in the backdrop of the controversial Beijing winter Olympics. Three of the four Quad member countries, the US, India, and Australia, have announced a public diplomatic boycott of the games, while Japanese delegations don't include any top government officials.

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