Washington: A crucial trilateral dialogue involving India, US and Japan to discuss regional issues is expected to be held by the year-end, the Obama administration has said, recognising New Delhi's "powerful economic presence" in Asia.
    
"We are working with the Governments of India and Japan to schedule this important gathering to discuss regional issues, and hope to hold this meeting before the New Year," the State Department said in a statement issued in response to a question during the daily press conference.
    
Earlier in the day, Deputy Secretary of State William Burns emphasised on the need to have a dialogue among the three countries.
    
India already has "a powerful economic and cultural presence in East Asia, and has built a vast network of economic agreements and security arrangements with partners like Japan, South Korea, Australia, Singapore, Indonesia and
Vietnam," he said.

India's outreach is growing toward a comprehensive vision for the East Asia region -- "a 'Look East' policy that is becoming an 'Act East' policy," Burns said.
    
"That's why, last year, our two countries launched a strategic dialogue on the Asia-Pacific to ensure that the world's two largest democracies pursue strategies that reinforce one another. And we are launching a new US-India-Japan trilateral consultation on regional issues," he said.
    
"We hope that India will join us in working to strengthen Asia's many regional institutions -- from the East Asia Summit to ASEAN, where India already trades nearly as much in goods as it does with the United States.”
    
"An architecture of free trade and investment that connects India to Southeast and East Asia will have a profound impact on global trade and economic growth," Burns said in his address to the World Affairs Councils of America National Conference.

(Agencies)