August 12, 2022

ACN News

Area Control Network News | Breaking News

Remarks at Perth USAsia Center – News

Ambassador
Atul
Keshap,
Principal
Deputy
Assistant
SecretaryBureau
of
East
Asian
and
Pacific
Affairs

Video
Conference

Perth
USAsia
Center
and
U.S.
Studies
Center
Conference


As
Prepared

Thank
you,
Professors
Flake
and
Jackman,
for
your
kind
introduction
and
inviting
me
today.
“State
of
the
United
States:
An
evolving
Alliance
agenda”

an
excellent
report,
and
a
broad,
compelling,
and
important
topic

and
ever-relevant
to
us
and
so
many
of
our
colleagues
across
the
Indo-Pacific.

Greetings
to
everyone
gathered
in
Canberra
today.
I
also
want
to
convey
warm
greetings
to
those
in
sunny
Perth,
where
I
was
fortunate
to
attend
two
Indian
Ocean
Rim
Association
(IORA)
summits
graciously
hosted
by
Australia
on
the
shores
of
the
Indian
Ocean.
I
am
also
delighted
to
speak
again
to
the
U.S.
Studies
Center,
bringing
back
fond
memories
of
a
talk
in
Sydney
in
2013
and
again
in
November
2019
here
in
Washington.

Australia
is
a
long-standing
ally
and
partner
of
the
United
States.
Australia
and
the
United
States
have
a
proud
history
of
assisting
one
another
in
times
of
crisis.
The
relationship
between
the
United
States
and
Australia
is,
without
question,
one
of
our
strongest
and
most
important,
and
will
continue
in
strength
and
purpose
for
decades
to
come.
No
further
proof
of
this
is
required
if
one
visits
the
Australian
War
Memorial
in
Canberra,
which
I
was
very
moved
to
see
on
a
visit
in
2013.
Our
“mateship”
has
been
forged
in
blood
and
shared
sacrifice
over
the
past
century.

Our
alliance
endures
because
our
shared
democratic
values
form
a
bedrock
of
trust
and
cooperation.

The
strength
of
our
alliance
is
seen
at
every
level.
The
people
of
Australia
and
the
United
States
support
each
other:
we
consume
each
other’s
movies
and
culture,
we
attend
each
other’s
schools,
and
in
non-COVID
times,
we
visit
each
other’s
countries
frequently.
And
we
have
long
sent
firefighters
to
help
each
other
battle
blazes
in
Queensland
and
in
California.

Our
Alliance
is
also
strong
at
the
national
level.
This
past
July,
our
Secretaries
of
State
and
Defense
hosted
their
Australian
counterparts
for
the
30th
annual
AUSMIN,
which
demonstrated
how
closely
aligned
we
are
on
many
issues
facing
the
Indo-Pacific
region.
FM
Payne
called
it
one
of
the
most
consequential
AUSMINs
ever,
and
she
and
DefMin
Reynolds
traveled
to
Washington
during
a
pandemic
and
quarantined
upon
return,
because
of
the
importance
we
all
place
on
our
bi-lateral
relationship
and
the
urgency
of
the
challenges
we
are
tackling
together.

We’ve
already
had
productive
exchanges
between
the
Biden
administration
and
the
Australian
government.
President
Biden
has
spoken
to
PM
Morrison,
as
has
Vice
President
Harris.
Secretary
Blinken’s
call
to
Foreign
Minister
Payne
was
one
of
the
very
first
calls
he
completed,
as
was
the
call
from
Defense
Secretary
Austin
to
Defense
Minister
Reynolds.
We
anticipate
a
productive
AUSMIN
2021
later
this
year,
which
will
include
a
focus
on
U.S.
and
Australian
efforts
to
vaccinate
the
Pacific
Islands
against
COVID-19
and
set
countries
up
for
success
economically
as
they
recover
from
the
pandemic-induced
worldwide
recession.

As
I
am
sure
you
have
all
seen
in
his
first
major
foreign
policy
speech,
Secretary
Blinken
named
revitalizing
ties
with
allies
and
partners
a
priority.
He
rightly
noted
that
our
alliances
are
what
the
military
calls
“force
multipliers.”
Our
alliance
with
Australia
has
been,
and
remains,
a
force
multiplier
for
both
of
our
countries,
allowing
us
to
leverage
each
other’s
strengths
to
improve
the
future
for
all
our
citizens.

Most
recently,
on
Friday,
our
leaders
met
in
the
Quad
format
to
proclaim
our
shared
values
of
democracy,
a
rules-based
international
order,
peaceful
resolution
of
disputes,
and
rule
of
law,
with
prosperity
for
all.

The
Quad

Australia
and
the
United
States
are
engaging
in
substantial
regional
multilateralism
to
work
together
on
many
issues
facing
the
region.
The
Quad
is
uniquely
positioned
to
help
lead
the
Indo-Pacific
towards
the
more
positive
vision
we
all
seek.

Last
week’s
Quad
summit
was
a
historic
moment
and
showcased
the
Quad’s
ability
to
pool
our
capabilities
and
build
habits
of
cooperation
to
address
the
world’s
most
urgent
problems
together.

The
administration
is
looking
forward
to
deepening
cooperation
on
combating
COVID-19
and
climate
change.

President
Biden
is
deeply
focused
on
the
issue
of
expanding
global
vaccination,
manufacturing,
and
delivery,
which
will
all
be
critical
to
end
the
COVID-19
dynamic.
The
Quad’s
COVID-19
engagement
is
a
joint
partnership
to
boost
vaccine
manufacturing
and
strengthen
vaccinations
to
benefit
the
Indo-Pacific.

We
are
also
looking
forward
to
working
together
on
emerging
technologies
and
messaging
the
positive
impacts
of
Quad
cooperation
in
the
Indo-Pacific.

Economic
Ties

In
addition
to
the
key
Summit
deliverables
on
COVID-19,
climate,
and
emerging
technologies,
the
Quad
will
continue
to
advance
coordination
on
issues
including
economic
recovery,
climate
change,
humanitarian
assistance
and
disaster
relief,
maritime
security,
counter
terrorism,
and
countering
disinformation.

Our economic
relationship
is
critical
to
both
of
our
economies,
and
it
continues
to
grow.
The
United
States
is
by
far
Australia’s
largest
investor,
and
most
important
economic
partner,
accounting
for
seven
percent
of
Australian
GDP​

as
much
as
the
entire
mining
sector.

More
than
1,100
U.S.
owned
firms
operate
in
Australia,
employing
320,000
Australians
at
salaries
well
above
the
national
average.

Much
of
that
investment
is
increasingly
going
into
the
advanced
technology
sectors
which
will
drive
our
economies
over
the
coming
decades

aerospace,
advanced
manufacturing,
biomedicine,
and
the
digital
economy.
The
technology
deployment
and
skills
development
accompanying
this
investment
is
helping
create
the
infrastructure
for
long-term
economic
growth
both
in
Australia
and
here
at
home.

Just
as
important,
the
United
States
is
the
top
destination
for
Australian
investment
overseas,
helping
create
good-paying
jobs
and
supporting
communities
across
our
country.

We
are
also
Australia’s
third
largest
trading
partner,
with
bilateral
trade
nearly
doubling
since
the
signing
of
the
Australia-U.S.
Free
Trade
Agreement
in
2005.

Working
together,
we
are
both
well
placed
to
help
lead
the
post-COVID
economic
recovery
and
return
to
growth
that
will
power
our
economies
over
the
long
term.

We
also
work
closely
with
Australia
within
APEC,
the
OECD
and
the
G20.

Regional
Issues

The
United
States
and
Australia
share
a
common
vision
of
a
free
and
open
Indo-Pacific.

Cooperation
is
critical

there
is
no
global
or
regional
challenge
that
can
be
met
by
any
one
nation
acting
alone.

We
are
both
strong
supporters
of
ASEAN
centrality
and
coordinate
our
support
to
ASEAN
closely.
We
are
both
active
in
supporting
a
rules-based
order
and
international
law
in
the
Indo-Pacific,
including
as
it
relates
to
the
South
China
Sea.

We
share
Australia’s
view
of
the
Mekong
region
as
strategically
important,
and
we
have
increased
our
coordination
on
assistance.
This
is
especially
true
in
helping
these
countries
combat
transnational
crime
and
trafficking.
We
should
support
regional
architecture
like
ACMECS
and
the
Mekong
River
Commission
and
encourage
ASEAN
to
take
a
stance
on
the
Mekong
region’s
transnational
challenges.

Additionally,
I
want
to
note
our
ongoing
efforts
with
Australia
and
others
to
urge
the
Burmese
military
to
refrain
from
violence
and
restore
the
democratically
elected
government,
particularly
in
light
of
the
brutal
and
lethal
attacks
on
protesters
over
the
weekend.
We
are
deeply
saddened
by
reports
as
many
as
42
protesters
were
killed.

The
junta’s
violence
against
its
own
people
is
immoral
and
indefensible,
and
we
will
continue
to
work
with
the
international
community
to
take
action
to
oppose
the
coup
and
escalating
violence.

The
United
States
and
Australia
are
both
committed
to
delivering
development
assistance
to
our
Pacific
neighbors.
We
coordinate
closely
on
development
and
support
for
the
region,
to
best
leverage
our
collective
efforts.
In
July
last
year,
USAID
and
DFAT
signed
an
updated
MOU
solidifying
joint
efforts
providing
development
assistance
to
the
Indo-Pacific
region,
complementing
the
relative
strengths
of
each
country.
We
are
focused
on
helping
our
neighbors
improve
their
capacity
so
they
can
manage
their
own
development
effectively
and
swiftly.
Last
October,
the
United
States
and
Australia,
together
with
Japan,
announced
our
first
project
under
our
Trilateral
Partnership
for
Infrastructure,
to
fund
construction
of
an
internet
cable
to
Palau.

The
United
States
has
an
extremely
close
relationships
with
the
Freely
Associated
States
(FAS)
of
Palau,
the
Republic
of
the
Marshall
Islands,
and
the
Federated
States
of
Micronesia.
Our
Compacts
of
Free
Association
with
these
countries
form
the
backbone
of
our
enduring
relationships.
Through
ongoing
negotiations
on
agreements
to
extend
and
amend
expiring
provisions
related
to
U.S.
economic
assistance
and
access
to
certain
U.S.
federal
programs
and
services,
we
are
seeking
to
strengthen
these
partnerships,
which
have
contributed
to
the
stability
and
prosperity
of
the
Indo-Pacific.

While
the
United
States
has
historically
focused
much
attention
and
foreign
assistance
on
the
FAS,
we
welcome
Australia’s
plans
to
establish
Embassies
in
all
three
countries.
Building
up
the
diplomatic
presence
of
open
democratic
countries,
collaborating
on
the
ground,
and
creating
more
opportunities
to
cooperate
on
common
goals,
benefits
us
all.

Climate

Climate
change
poses
serious
short,
medium,
and
long-term
challenges
for
all
countries
in
the
Indo-Pacific
region.
Climate
change
is
a
critical
area
where
the
United
States
and
Australia
are
well
placed
to
work
together,
to
help
each
other
and
our
Pacific
neighbors
face
these
challenges
effectively,
and
demonstrate
leadership
in
the
region
by
reducing
our
own
national
emissions
to
help
get
the
world
on
track
to
keep
warming
to
1.5
degrees
Celsius.
We
are
focused
on
protecting
populations
and
helping
them
recover
from
increasing
extreme
weather
events
and
other
consequences,
while
adapting
economies
to
reduce
our
carbon
footprints
and
build
a
sustainable
future.

One
of
Special
Presidential
Envoy
for
Climate
Secretary
John
Kerry’s
earliest
calls
was
to
Minister
for
Energy
and
Emissions
Reduction
Angus
Taylor
and
we
look
forward
to
doing
more
with
Australia
on
climate
issues.
Businesses,
universities,
researchers,
and
scientists
across
Australia
and
the
United
States
are
uniquely
positioned
to
tackle
the
climate
crisis,
and
help
bring
the
Indo-Pacific
region
into
a
sustainable
and
prosperous
future
through
innovation
and
a
green
energy
revolution.

And
lest
anyone
relegate
climate
change
to
‘merely’
a
tech
or
solar
panel
issue,
let
me
reinforce

we
see
climate
change
as
an
economic,
humanitarian,
environmental,
and
security
issue.
President
Biden
included
the
risks
the
acceleration
of
climate
change
poses
to
the
whole
world
in
his
speech
to
the
Munich
Security
Conference
precisely
because
this
is
an
existential
crisis.

The
PRC
Challenge

Securing
a
free,
open,
transparent,
and
prosperous
Pacific
will
be
one
of
the
most
consequential
efforts
we
undertake.

The
United
States
and
Australia’s
common
vision
of
a
free
and
open
Indo-Pacific
is
predicated
on
a
rules-based,
rights-respecting,
corruption-combatting
context.
Strong
democracies
which
protect
the
self-determination
of
their
people,
ensure
human
rights
are
respected,
defend
freedom
of
speech
and
freedom
of
the
press,
and
conduct
government
business
openly
and
transparently,
are
critical
for
the
pursuit
of
happiness
for
all
people
in
the
Indo-Pacific
region.

Secretary
of
State
Antony
J.
Blinken
and
National
Security
Advisor
Jake
Sullivan
will
travel
March
18
to
Anchorage,
Alaska
for
discussions
with
People’s
Republic
of
China
(PRC)
Director
of
the
Office
of
the
Central
Commission
for
Foreign
Affairs
Yang
Jiechi
and
State
Councilor
Wang
Yi.
The
talks

which
will
take
place
after
the
Secretary’s
trip
to
Japan
and
Korea
and
meetings
with
two
of
our
closest
regional
allies

are
an
opportunity
to
engage
on
a
wide
range
of
issues
with
the
PRC,
including
ones
where
we
have
deep
disagreements.
(EAP
Press
Guidance
03/11)

COVID
Cooperation

And
of
course,
Australia
and
the
United
States
are
working
with
each
other
and
other
partners
to
help
the
Indo-Pacific
manage
the
COVID-19
pandemic.
This
pandemic
that
has
ground
so
much
human
activity
to
a
halt,
and
killed
and
harmed
millions,
has
left
the
Pacific
relatively
unscathed
compared
to
other
areas,
thanks
to
the
swift
action
of
so
many
Pacific
countries.
However,
closed
borders
are
not
an
indefinite
solution
in
a
globalized
world,
and
Australia
and
the
United
States
are
working
to
help
our
Pacific
neighbors
fortify
their
healthcare
systems,
strengthen
public
health
responses,
plan
mass
vaccine
programs,
and
prepare
economic
recovery
plans.

I
am
hopeful
our
efforts
will
be
successful,
and
we
will
be
able
to
have
future
discussions
in
person
in
the
not
too
distant
future.

In
Closing

The
strength
of
the
U.S.-Australia
alliance,
our
decades
of
cooperation
on
bi-lateral
and
regional
challenges,
our
economic
ties
that
support
tens
of
thousands
of
jobs
in
both
countries,
our
development
assistance
coordination
across
the
Indo-Pacific,
our
formal
and
informal
cultural
exchanges,
and
the
entirety
of
our
alliance

of
our
“mateship”

are
concrete
positive
results
for
the
people
of
the
United
States,
Australia,
and
the
Indo-Pacific
region.
And
after
this
conference,
I
am
diving
right
back
into
coordinating
with
Australians
to
continue
our
work,
confront
challenges,
and
forge
ahead.

Thank
you
all.

Source: Sam News

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