Hillary Clinton & S M Krishna To Visit Thailand For Security Meet
The Indian External Affairs Minister, S.M. Krishna and the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, will head separately to Thailand to attend Asia's top security forum on Tuesday. The major topics which will be dominating the discussion include terrorism, the North Korean nuclear issue and the global financial crisis.
Clinton leaves Delhi for the Thai island resort, Phuket, on Tuesday morning, followed by Krishna a few hours later.
Krishna's presence at the post-ministerial meeting of the 10-nation Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the 27-nation ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) underlines India's growing stakes in the economically vibrant East Asian region that boasts an annual output of $1.1 trillion and represents more than half the world's population.
Krishna will meet the foreign ministers of China, Japan and Australia, among others after the meet.
India and ASEAN have finalised a free trade area agreement (FTA) in goods, scheduled to be implemented from Jan 1, 2010. The FTA seeks to eliminate tariffs on over 4,000 products, which include items ranging from chemicals to electronics.
Clinton's participation in the conference will be watched closely as it marks the return of the US to the resource-rich East Asia region, where Beijing and Washington are vying for influence.