Senior officials from the United States, Australia, India, and Japan met virtually on September 25, 2020, for consultations on collective efforts to advance a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.
The four democracies discussed ways to work together to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, promote transparency and counter disinformation, and protect the rules-based order the region has long enjoyed.
Noting the importance of digital connectivity and secure networks, the officials discussed ways to promote the use of trusted vendors, particularly for fifth generation (5G) networks. They explored ways to enhance coordination on counterterrorism, maritime security, cyber security, and regional connectivity, as well as quality infrastructure based upon international best practices, such as the G20 Principles for Quality Infrastructure Investment. Participants also highlighted the need to improve supply chains in sectors including critical minerals, medical supplies, and pharmaceuticals.
The officials reaffirmed their countries’ strong support for ASEAN centrality and ASEAN-led regional architecture. They explored ways to work together in the Mekong sub-region, in the South China Sea, and across the Indo-Pacific to support international law, pluralism, regional stability, and post-pandemic recovery efforts.
The four countries committed to continuing regular consultations, including at the senior officials’ and Ministerial levels.