Indo-pacific: Charting a course through turbulent waters

Things are changing quickly in the Indo-Pacific as countries begin to cluster, writes Cleo Paskal

The World Today
5 minute READ

Cleo Paskal

Former Associate Fellow, Environment and Society Programme and Asia-Pacific Programme

On March 12, 2021, leaders of the four nations that make up the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue – known as the Quad – met for the first time, albeit virtually. 

After the meeting, Joe Biden, the US president, and the prime ministers of India, Japan and Australia, Narendra Modi, Yoshihide Suga and Scott Morrison, issued a joint statement, saying that they were ‘united in a shared vision for the free and open Indo-Pacific’. They also promised that senior officials would meet regularly, and established working groups to better cooperate on vaccine production, climate change and critical and emerging technologies – with more to come.

A year ago, a Quad joint statement and wide-ranging work plans outside the defence sphere would have been considered very unlikely by most analysts. 

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