Dominic Perrottet, the Premier of New South Wales, will conclude a diplomatic tour through Asia today.
The Australian delegation met with government officials and industry leaders from Japan, South Korea and India to promote trade and investment in areas ranging from biotech and clean energy, key issues on the premier’s agenda, to tourism and international education.
Perrottet’s trip closely followed a Western Australian delegation’s visit to India and exemplifies Australian efforts to build closer relations with allies and partners across the Indo-Pacific region as its relations with China has come under strain in recent years.
Regional governments in Australia are likely to play a more active role in deepening economic partnerships with Indo-Pacific economies outside of China, and their initiatives will gain support from the new Australian government under Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. Despite signs of thawing relations with China, Albanese’s administration has inherited the tough line on Beijing from his predecessor and is unlikely to steer away from Australia’s Indo-Pacific-centered foreign policy. To counter China’s expanding influence, Canberra will keep tapping the potential of other Asian economies as alternatives, if not replacements, to China, Australia’s top trading partner.
Jeremy Ma is a research analyst with Foreign Brief focusing on East Asian geopolitics. He specializes in regional security and social issues. His research interests include China’s foreign relations, cross-Strait relations, and territorial and maritime disputes in East Asia.