Multilateral Organizations Play Important Role in the Asia-Pacific

Posted by Kurt Campbell
January 17, 2013
Secretary Clinton Poses for ASEAN Family Photo in Cambodia

Regional multilateral organizations play an increasingly important role in the Asia-Pacific and the United States further strengthened its engagement with these institutions. The Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), East Asia Summit (EAS), and the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) all play a vital role in mobilizing common action for shared concerns. President Obama made his fifth trip to the region in November to attend the East Asia Summit and meet the leaders of the 10 member states of ASEAN. The trip included first-ever visits by a U.S. President to Burma and Cambodia, as well as a stop in Thailand. At the Summit in Phnom Penh, the President underscored the enduring U.S. commitment to play an active role in the region's emerging multilateral architecture and discussed ways to enhance cooperation on energy, maritime security, non-proliferation, and humanitarian assistance.

Secretary Clinton traveled to Cambodia in July for the EAS Ministerial and ARF, where she discussed the importance of regional institutions addressing regional challenges. On the sidelines of the ARF, Secretary Clinton co-headlined the U.S.-ASEAN Business Forum, bringing the largest-ever U.S. business delegation to ASEAN in order to promote connectivity and economic growth. Secretary Clinton also convened a ministerial meeting of the Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI), which the United States helped launch in 2009 to address issues such as pandemic threats, food security, environment challenges, and energy in the Mekong sub-region. Secretary Clinton also became the first U.S. Secretary of State to attend the PIF Post-Forum Dialogue when she traveled to the Cook Islands in August, demonstrating our enhanced focus on the Pacific.

The United States has also stepped up its dialogue and cooperation with India in the Asia-Pacific, including through the biannual U.S.-India Consultations on the Asia-Pacific and the India-U.S.-Japan Trilateral Strategic Dialogue. As Secretary Clinton has noted, we have a placed a strategic bet on India -- we see a democratic and economically vibrant India playing a key role in contributing to regional stability and prosperity.

We have also deepened our dialogue with European partners. Europe has long been America's closest partner in confronting global challenges. We see the evolution of cooperation in the Asia Pacific as an important new chapter in Transatlantic Relations. Secretary Clinton and EU High Representative Catherine Ashton underscored the importance of this last July at the first EU-U.S. Ministerial meeting on enhancing Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific on the margins of the ASEAN Regional Forum.

Editor's Note: This is the second in a three-part series reflecting on U.S. diplomacy in the East Asia and Pacific region. Read Assistant Secretary Campbell's previous or next entries in the series.

Comments

Comments

Andrew N.
February 12, 2013

Andrew N. writes:

Hun Sen Khmer Rouge Murder dictator Criminal against Humanity ,Mafia state and drug dealer . Please USA help my Country and my people

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