Indo-Pacific Report Launch
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Indo-Pacific Report Launch
2 April @ 6:15 pm - 7:15 pm
According to the Asia Development Bank, Asia will need $1.7 trillion a year in investment in infrastructure if it is to continue current growth rates. Its ability to provide that is well-below that figure. In 2013, China stepped up its own contribution by creating the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), which aims to enhance connectivity across the Central Asian and Indian Ocean Region space. While this has been generally welcomed in the region, it has also been perceived by other regional powers – such as Japan, India, and Australia – as having strategic implications. China’s approach has seen an increasing number of ports across strategic chokepoints coming into Chinese hands, while its lending practices have seen many developing states suffer insolvency problems. While this has been problematic, Beijing has still benefitted from this by taking exchanging debt forgiveness for a controlling stake in key infrastructure in those countries.
India, Japan, Australia, and now the United States have responded by developing their own narratives and their own approaches toward infrastructure development. The Indo-Pacific concept or “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” as the US and Japan call it, has seen a balancing framework lifted into policy circles. Concerned how Beijing’s grand strategy seems to effect trade access, a number of countries have also adopted the Indo-Pacific nomenclature and infrastructure approach, including Malaysia, Taiwan, and now Indonesia. At this event, the panel of experts will discuss how different states approach the “Indo-Pacific”, what they feel about China’s own strategy, and will analyse the likely direction of infrastructure development.
By kind invitation of the Rt Hon. the Lord Arbuthnot of Erdom, the Henry Jackson Society is delighted to welcome you to join Mr. David Y. L. Lin, Dr. Euan Graham, Dr. John Hemmings, Professor Harsh V. Pant, Rahul Roy-Chaudhury and Dr. David Scott for the Indo-Pacific Report Launch.
Mr. David Y. L. Lin is the Representative of the Taipei Representative Office in the United Kingdom. He graduated from National Chengchi University, Department of International Economics, and earned a Master of Science from Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service. He entered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) in 1977. His previous posting was Minister of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of International Cooperation and Development Fund (ICDF) (2012-16). His diplomatic experience includes Representative, Taipei Representative Office in the European Union and Belgium (2010-12), Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs (2008-10), Director-General, Department of International Organizations, MOFA (2007-08), Representative, Taipei Economic and Trade Office in Indonesia (2003-07), and Director-General, Department of European Affairs, MOFA (2001-03).
Dr. Euan Graham is Executive Director of La Trobe Asia at La Trobe University in Melbourne. He has developed a career specialization in Asian security issues, with a particular expertise on the maritime domain. Graham has several years’ experience in the think tank sector, with the Lowy Institute, in Sydney, and RSIS, in Singapore. Before that, he was a Senior Research Officer for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. He remains an associate fellow with RUSI and Non-Resident Fellow with the Lowy Institute.
Dr. John Hemmings is the Director of the Asia Studies Centre at the Henry Jackson Society and an Adjunct Fellow at CSIS. Previously, he has worked at RUSI and held a fellowship at the Pacific Forum in Honolulu. Currently his research focuses on the Indo-Pacific, primarily through the lens of alliances, and the geopolitical repercussions of China’s rise.
Professor Harsh V. Pant is Director, Research at Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi and Professor of International Relations at King’s College London. He is also a Non-Resident Fellow with the Wadhwani Chair in US-India Policy Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Washington, DC. Currently his research is focused on the changing strategic dynamic in the Indo-Pacific.
Dr. David Scott is a prolific writer, with three books, and over 70 refereed articles and book chapters. He is a presenter at the NATO Defense College in Rome, and analyst for the NATO Defense College Foundation. His research currently focuses on the maritime geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific and different Indo-Pacific strategies being pursued by India, Australia, Indonesia, China, Japan, Taiwan, US, as well as France and the UK.
Lord Arbuthnot is a British Conservative Party politician. He was returned as Member of Parliament for Wanstead and Woodford from 1987 to 1997, and then as MP for North East Hampshire from 1997 to 2015. Arbuthnot served as Chairman of the Defence Select Committee from 2005 to 2014, before being nominated as a Life Peer in the Dissolution Peerages List 2015 of August 2015.
On the 2nd of April, the Henry Jackson Society hosted a panel discussion with Lord Arbuthnot, Mr. David Y. L. Lin, Dr. Euan Graham, Professor Harsh V. Pant, Rahul Roy-Chaudhury, Dr. David Scott and Dr. John Hemmings from the HJS.
Lord Arbuthnot opened the panel by welcoming the speakers and the guests. He then gave a short introduction into the topic gave the word then to Mr. David Y. L. Lin, who spoke about the importance of promoting peace, stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific. Ambassador Lin proceeded by expressing his and his counties view on the situation and giving the others an insight into Taiwan’s foreign politics. Following that he said they are “seeking to play a proactive role in fostering regional prosperity to trade, investment and economic cooperation”, explaining their policy to enhance connectivity and cooperation in a variety of areas. Taiwan is hoping to join the regional trading block in the near future and by that to strengthen the economic partnership in the Indo-Pacific.
HJS’ Dr. John Hemmings followed giving an introduction to the report, explaining its’ importance, relevance and coverage. For him the Indo-Pacific is less about containment but more about opportunity for the involved countries and a mixture of values, competition and trade. Hemmings brings in the results from the report introducing the background of the Indo-Pacific-project and how the US got involved in the first place. He finishes by introducing the speakers in greater detail.
Dr. Euan Graham takes over here and makes clear that he represents the Australian point of view. He gave the audience image of how his government is involved in this project and shared his knowledge on the current events. By taking a look at the powers in this region he was able to put the recent events into context and clarifying their intentions.
Dr. David Scott made three broad points. The first, concerning Brexit that has coincided with a renewed UK interest and re-engagement in the Indo-Pacific. Here he took a look back into the pre-Brexit time.
Last to speak was Mr. Rahul Roy-Chaudhury putted a new aspect into the discussion where he explains how India is at the very centre of the conversations and what India means when it comes to the term of Indo-Pacific. India is now trying to look at what it can do in terms of reimagining its’ own role in the region and beyond looking outside the framework of the India-Pakistan-conversation.
The event closed with a round of questions and answers.
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