Bangkok [Thailand], May 31
Senior officials from the US, Australia, India, and Japan met here on Friday for consultations on their collective efforts to advance a free, open, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region. They welcomed ASEAN's efforts to develop an Indo-Pacific outlook.
"The four countries further affirmed their strong support for ASEAN centrality and ASEAN-led regional architecture, as well as their support for other regional institutions, including the Indian Ocean Rim Association and Pacific Islands Forum," the statement said.
Their consultations were a part of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad), an informal strategic grouping consisting of four pro-democratic countries - US, India, Japan, and Australia. The grouping is seen by many as a counter to China's increasing economic and military might.
During the meeting, the four nations reaffirmed their shared commitment to preserving and promoting the rules-based order in the region.
They underscored their intent to continue close coordination and collaboration in support of sustainable, private-sector led development, maritime security, and good governance, the statement said.
The participants discussed initiatives undertaken by each country to encourage transparent, principles-based investment in quality infrastructure in accordance with international standards and leverage the potential of the private sector.
The four countries agreed to continue to explore opportunities to enhance cooperation including in support of regional disaster response, cybersecurity, maritime security, counterterrorism, and non-proliferation.
"Participants also noted their desire to work with like-minded partners and allies to promote a transparent, rules-based approach to trans-boundary challenges. They highlighted their efforts to maintain universal respect for international law and freedom of navigation and overflight," the statement said.
The four Quad countries underscored their intent to continue regular consultations on Indo-Pacific engagement and initiatives together and with other interested countries and institutions.