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BrahMos deal: EAM S Jaishankar to visit Philippines from Feb 13-15

Source : Zee News

BrahMos deal: EAM S Jaishankar to visit Philippines from Feb 13-15
External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar



Country’s External Affairs Minister (EAM) Dr S Jaishankar will be on a visit to the Philippines from February 13th to 15th February 7, 2022, to oversee the BrahMos deal signed between the two countries.

The visit comes in the backdrop of India and the Philippines last month signing the USD 374.96 million deal under which New Delhi will export the supersonic BrahMos missiles to the ASEAN country. The is the biggest defence export deal that India has ever signed and which was conceptualized in 2017. The coastal defence regiment of the Philippine marines will be the primary employer of the missiles.  India will be delivering 3 batteries and also train the operators and maintainers as part of the deal.

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

The last foreign ministerial visit to the country was in 2013 when the then EAM Salman Khurshid visited the country. Minister of State in MEA, Gen V K Singh visited the country in 2017. 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 that begins from 10th February. The EAM will be visiting Australia for the Quad in persons foreign ministers’ meet, a visit that will have a major bilateral component as well. 

MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi at weekly presser said, “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. 

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

The Quad FMs meet happen in the backdrop of the controversial Beijing winter Olympics. 3 of the 4 Quad member countries, US, India and Australia have announced a public diplomatic boycott of the games, while Japanese delegations don’t include any top govt officials.

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