Pompeo encourages closer ties with Indo-Pacific nations amid Chinese influence

30-Oct-2020 Intellasia | TaiwanNews | 6:02 AM Print This Post

Amid a whirlwind trip across the Indo-Pacific, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated that relations between Washington and countries in the region have been strengthening in the face of increasing Chinese influence.

Pompeo is set to arrive in Vietnam on Thursday (October 29) to participate in the 2020 Indo-Pacific Business Forum, which kicked off Wednesday (October 30). The forum, which aims to strengthen American and European cooperation in Vietnam, will see the signing of multiple agreements and contracts.



Officials from the US and Vietnamese governments as well as the US-Asean Business Council, American Chamber of Commerce, and Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry are attending the event, Liberty Times reported.

On the forum’s first day, Vietnamese deputy prime minister and Foreign minister Pham Binh Ming called the US an important trading partner and mentioned that previous market access issues have been resolved. He added that Vietnam will continue to provide a favourable policy framework to build an Asean economy with “high competitiveness and vitality.”

Pompeo’s Vietnam visit comes after stops in India, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives in an effort to solidify partnerships in the Indo-Pacific. In a pre-recorded video, the secretary of state told conference attendees that the US’ relationships in the region have expanded under the leadership of President Trump.

The US International Development Finance Corporation has invested more than $1 billion in energy and telecommunications infrastructure in Southeast Asia, Pompeo said. He also emphasized that the US is not alone in promoting regional prosperity it also partnered with Japan and Australia to create the Blue Dot Network, which is an initiative to assess and certify infrastructure projects worldwide.

Pompeo said that when the investment environment is suitable for the private sector, prosperity will follow. He further stated that American companies have high-quality products, are transparent, and abide by the rule of law in stark contrast with companies supported by the Chinese government.

The US, Japan, and Australia recently agreed to invest $30 million in an underwater cable in the Pacific to help the island nation of Palau resist China’s growing influence in the region.

On Friday, Pompeo will visit Indonesia to hold bilateral talks with Foreign minister Lestari Priansari before returning to the US




Category: Regional

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