Officials from Australia, Japan, India and US to hold Quad talks in Singapore

Officials from Australia, Japan, India and US to hold Quad talks in Singapore

Officials from the countries that make up the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue—Australia, India, Japan and the US—will hold talks on the

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Photo: AP

Officials from the countries that make up the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue—Australia, India, Japan and the US—will hold talks on the sidelines of the East Asia Summit in Singapore.

The Quad is an informal strategic dialogue that is maintained by low-level official talks amongst its members regarding the Indo-Pacific environment. The grouping was officially revived in 2017, following a decade-long hiatus as part of a US-led effort to protect the regional rules-based order and principles of the multilateral free-trade system. Their discussions are expected to focus on growing concerns about Chinese activity in the region and the importance of strengthening the regional role of ASEAN, despite no Quad country being a member. While India is viewed as a moderating regional force to China militarily and economically, it is likely to avoid any announcements that will antagonise Beijing.

The focus on supporting ASEAN is to address Indian concern about any potential militarisation of the Quad. This is expected to involve backing ASEAN strategic or economic positions on the occasions when the organisation reaches consensus on a topic. However, the Quad’s hesitance to become a formal multilateral grouping makes it unlikely that it will be able to reach a decision on this issue in the short-term.

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