KIGALI: Dr. S. Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister (EAM), will be visiting Kigali from June 22-25 to attend the 26th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). EAM will be leading the Indian delegation to the CHOGM, which had earlier been postponed twice due to Covid-19 pandemic.
EAM will be representing Prime Minister of India at the Commonwealth Summit on 24-25 June, as well as attending the pre-CHOGM Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on June 23 in Kigali.
A number of Forums including the Commonwealth Youth Forum, Commonwealth Women Forum, Commonwealth Business Forum, Commonwealth People’s Forum, and other side-events are also planned on the side-lines of CHOGM by the incoming Chair of the Commonwealth, i.e. the Government of Republic of Rwanda.
The theme of 26th CHOGM Summit is: “Delivering a Common Future: Connecting, Innovating, Transforming”. The Leaders of the Commonwealth Member States are scheduled to deliberate on issues of contemporary relevance, including global challenges like – climate change, food security, health issues and likely to adopt the following four Outcome Documents: CHOGM Communique; Kigali Declaration on Child Care and Protection Reform; Declaration on Sustainable Urbanization and Commonwealth Living Lands Charter: A Commonwealth Call to Action on Living Lands (CALL).
During the visit, EAM is expected to hold several bilateral meetings with his counterparts from Commonwealth member states and other visiting dignitaries. EAM would also be interacting with members of the Indian community at a reception to be hosted by the Indian High Commission in Kigali.
The Commonwealth provides an important platform to deepen India’s engagement with Commonwealth members, in particular the Small States (SS) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS). India is also one of the largest contributors to the Commonwealth and has assisted the organisation with technical assistance and capacity building. In 2018, India announced the creation of a Commonwealth Window, dedicating US$50 million for development projects and assistance to developing countries of the Commonwealth.