Enhancing bilateral cooperation was a subject of discussion between Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly and Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, particularly in light of Canada’s new Indo-Pacific strategy.
The phone call came more than two weeks after Canada unveiled its extensive Indo-Pacific strategy, which aims to advance security, resilience, and peace in the face of challenges brought on by China’s assertive behaviour throughout the area.
“Good to talk to Canadian FM @melaniejoly. Spoke about enhancing our bilateral cooperation and promoting people to people ties. Also exchanged views on the Indo-Pacific and how Canada’s new strategy can contribute to our relationship,” Jaishankar said in a tweet.
Joly tweeted that she and Jaishankar discussed Canada’s “new Indo-Pacific Strategy and how we plan to work together to strengthen our people-to-people ties and advance our shared interests as India chairs the G20 next year”.
Relations between India and Canada have been strained recently due to a number of issues, notably New Delhi’s worries about pro-Khalistan activists’ actions on Canadian land. Currently, both parties are working to get things back on track.
“India’s strategic importance and leadership – both across the region and globally – will only increase as India, the world’s biggest democracy, becomes the most populous country in the world and continues to grow its economy,” the strategy document stated.
“Canada will seek new opportunities to partner and engage in dialogue in areas of common interest and values, including security, and the promotion of democracy, pluralism and human rights,” it added.
It said, “China has benefitted from the rules-based international order to grow and prosper, but it is now actively seeking to reinterpret these rules to gain greater advantage.”
The document added, “China’s assertive pursuit of its economic and security interests, advancement of unilateral claims, foreign interference and increasingly coercive treatment of other countries and economies have significant implications in the region, in Canada and around the world.”
The text also emphasised the need of respecting the sovereignty of other nations as a foundational element of the rule-based international system and of governments’ ability to cooperate to address common issues.