Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Papua New Guinea on Sunday, marking the first-ever visit by an Indian prime minister to the Pacific Island nation. His counterpart, James Marape, greeted him with a traditional gesture of respect by touching his feet. Modi was also given a ceremonial welcome by the government and greeted with enthusiasm by Indian diaspora members. He expressed gratitude in a tweet and looks forward to boosting India’s ties with this great nation during his visit.
Modi’s visit to Papua New Guinea follows his successful completion of his visit to Japan for the G7 and Quad summits. Additionally, he will launch the Tok Pisin translation of “The Tirukkural,” a renowned Tamil text composed by Thiruvalluvar, in Papua New Guinea. Tok Pisin, one of the official languages of Papua New Guinea, will be the medium for this release ceremony.
During his visit, he will co-host the third summit of the Forum for India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) alongside James Marape on Monday. The FIPIC Summit will witness the participation of leaders from 14 countries, including Cook Islands, Fiji, Kiribati, and more. Modi is scheduled to engage in bilateral talks with Marape and meet with Bob Dadae, the Governor General of Papua New Guinea. Additionally, he will have a meeting with New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins.
US President Joe Biden took an early departure from his diplomatic tour for debt crisis talks and will not be attending the Pacific summit. Instead, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken will represent Biden at a parallel summit in Papua New Guinea.