Financial inclusion has become a reality for 1.3 bn Indians: PM Modi

Financial inclusion has become a reality for 1.3 billion Indians with the government launching a number of people-friendly digital platforms, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Wednesday as he pitched India as the "best" investment destination for tech firms at the prestigious Fintech Festival here.

Briefing the reporters, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale later said it was a "very good" meeting.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on arrival.

America has a steadfast and enduring commitment to the Indo-Pacific region but wants cooperation, not control, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said Thursday in comments to a Southeast Asian summit that carried a veiled swipe at China's growing influence.

While economic cooperation appears to be a positive development, should the global economy pull apart into different blocs, with hindrances to trade and investment among other matters, Asean would be put in a hard position, Mr Lee added.

In contrast with Trump's preference for bilateral dealings and distrust of global institutions, the meetings in Singapore have championed a commitment to free trade and a multilateral approach to coping with myriad issues, from cybercrime and terrorism to maritime security and e-commerce.

The Indo-Pacific region also came up during the discussion on Wednesday between Prime Minister Modi and US Vice President Mike Pence.

In a statement, Pence's office said he encouraged "free, fair, and reciprocal trade with India".

"We are in an age of a historic transition brought about by technology", the Prime Minister added.

The news came nearly a year after Pyongyang's last test of an intercontinental ballistic missile and recalled the repeated announcements of 2017, which included by far its most powerful nuclear blast to date and rockets that brought the whole of the U.S. mainland into range.

The US said the North axed the talks because they weren't ready, and Trump insisted he was in "no rush". "Not only that India is a substantial market but because the way we are placed regionally we can become a hub for exports to the rest of the region", Gokhale said.

The planned NY meeting between US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his North Korean counterpart, Kim Yong-chol, was abruptly postponed due to what the US called scheduling issues.

Cho said that a promised landmark visit by Kim to Seoul was still in the planning, although he hinted it could take place later than the end of the year, the timeline set by the two sides.

"PM Modi stressed that there was a great opportunity for United States of America in India in making defence equipment and setting up defence industry in India".

Interviewer Vaughn Hillyard's question about verification to Pence was, "To hold this next summit, does the United States, does this administration need to get a complete list from the North Koreans of their weapons and their facilities, to hold this next summit?"

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) is a regional intergovernmental organisation comprising 10 Southeast Asian countries, which promotes intergovernmental cooperation and facilitates economic, political, security, military, educational, and socio-cultural integration among its members and other Asian states.

  • Tracy Klein