Senior officials from the United States, Australia, India, and Japan have met in Singapore for consultations on the Indo-Pacific region.
According to the US State Department, the talks held yesterday (Thursday) also focused on Sri Lanka.
“United States officials underscored the importance of coordinated and complementary engagement to advance shared regional interests, including support for the new Maldivian Government and encouragement of an outcome to political developments in Sri Lanka consistent with democratic principles,” the US State Department said.
At the talks the officials reaffirmed a shared commitment to maintain and strengthen a rules-based order in the Indo-Pacific in which all nations are sovereign, strong, and prosperous. They further highlighted the complementary visions for the region held by their four countries, grounded in a shared support for a free, open, and inclusive region that fosters universal respect for international law, freedom of navigation and overflight, and sustainable development.
Officials from the four countries focused on their shared goals, including support for sustainable development, connectivity, and good governance.
The officials highlighted the importance of good governance in strengthening the rules-based order and reviewed initiatives to enhance regional security, including through cooperation on maritime, counterterrorism, non-proliferation, and cyber issues. They committed to driving broad economic development that harnesses the region’s full potential and fosters connectivity and development of infrastructure based on transparency, genuine need, sustainable debt burden, and other principles in accordance with international standards. They reaffirmed their strong support for ASEAN centrality and the ASEAN-led regional architecture, as well as their support for other regional institutions such as the Indian Ocean Rim Association and the Pacific Islands Forum. Participants highlighted the importance of coordination and collaboration with all interested countries and institutions to support a diverse, peaceful, and prosperous region.
The four countries looked forward to regular consultations on Indo-Pacific engagement and initiatives. (Colombo Gazette)