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Joint G7-ASEAN meeting of foreign ministers to conclude


Joint G7-ASEAN meeting of foreign ministers to conclude

Photo: Delphine Touitou/AFP

Multiple countries from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will attend meetings scheduled for the final day of a joint foreign ministers’ summit with the G7 in Liverpool today.

Ministers from Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines have been invited to the summit, which represents an attempt to build stronger economic, political and defense ties between the G7 and Southeast Asia. The summit acts as an extension of May’s G7 meeting, which saw representatives from India, Australia, South Africa and South Korea join the usual delegations in an effort to expand the UK’s diplomatic presence in the Indo-Pacific region.

Expect today’s discussions to focus on key multilateral issues, including post-COVID-19 economic development, global vaccine equity and human rights. As the UK seeks to broaden its autonomy from the EU through expanding its connections with the Pacific, increasing international investment in Southeast Asia will take a key role.

As such, expect the British representatives to discuss future British funding for infrastructure projects in the region. The British International Investment body was revamped last month, and its international investment budget was increased to roughly $10.5 billion from $2 billion in 2020, with the bulk of this investment likely going to ASEAN partners.

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Photo: REUTERS/Edgar Su/Pool

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