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India, Russia, China hold trilateral after 12 years; call for reforming multilateral institutions

twitter-logoPTI | December 1, 2018 | Updated 11:23 IST

(Eds: Updates with more details, quotes) Buenos Aires, Dec 1 (PTI) Leaders of India, China and Russia have called for reforming multilateral institutions, including the UN and WTO, as they underscored the benefits of a multilateral trading system and an open world economy for global growth and prosperity during a trilateral meeting they held after a gap of 12 years. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin held the trilateral meeting, the second among the three countries after a gap of 12 years, on the sidelines of the G-20 summit here to discuss cooperation in various areas. "Excellent meeting of the RIC (Russia, India, China) Trilateral. President Putin, President Xi Jinping and I discussed a wide range of subjects that would further cement the friendship between our nations and enhance world peace," Modi said. The Russia-India-China (RIC) meeting came hours after Prime Minister Modi, his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe and US President Donald Trump held their first trilateral meeting on the margins of the summit. "Deepening engagement with valued development partners. President Vladimir Putin, President Xi Jinping and PM @narendramodi participate in the RIC (Russia, India, China) trilateral in Buenos Aires. @KremlinRussia," the Prime Minister's Office tweeted. In a statement, the External Affairs Ministry said the three leaders exchanged views on expanding mutual cooperation in international forums, and to encourage greater interaction among the three countries. "They agreed on the importance of reform and strengthening of multilateral institutions which have benefitted the world, including the United Nations, WTO and well-established as well as new global financial institutions. They underscored the benefits of a multilateral trading system and an open world economy for global growth and prosperity," it said. The three leaders agreed to have regular consultations to jointly promote international and regional peace and stability, to strengthen cooperation through BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa), the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation) and the East Asia Summit (EAS) mechanisms, to address global challenges such as terrorism and climate change, and to encourage peaceful resolution of all differences, the statement added. They also acknowledged the importance of cooperation in RIC format and agreed to hold further such trilateral meetings on multilateral occasions. External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said the meeting was characterised by warmth and positivity. The three leaders discussed cooperation and coordination in various areas which could contribute to global peace and stability, Kumar said, adding that the 'RIC' trilateral summit took place after a gap of 12 years. Earlier, India, Japan and the US discussed major issues of global and multilateral interests in their first trilateral meeting, which assumed importance in the wake of China flexing its muscles in the strategic Indo-Pacific region. At the meeting, India underscored its firm commitment to make the Indo-Pacific a region for shared economic growth. Asserting that India will "continue to work together on shared values", Modi said, "When you look at the acronym of our three countries -- Japan, America, and India -- it is 'JAI', which stands for success in Hindi." PTI GVS ZH ZH

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