U.S. President Joe Biden postponed his travel due to debt ceiling negotiations in Washington, according to Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, who stated on Wednesday that the Quad summit would not take place in Sydney the following week without him. Biden postponed his trips to Australia and Papua New Guinea owing to persistent difficulties with the US Congress over raising the debt ceiling.
"The Quad leaders meeting will not be going ahead in Sydney next week. We, though will be having that discussion between Quad leaders in Japan," Prime Minister Anthony Albanese stated in a news conference. The leaders of India, Japan, the United States, and Australia are anticipated to attend a side meeting of the Quad Nations at this weekend's G7 conference in Hiroshima. The visit was meant to reaffirm US engagement in the Indo-Pacific and allay regional worries about the Aukus deal. President Biden allegedly emphasised the importance of the Quad, according to Prime Minister Anthony Albanese. "He [President Biden] was very disappointed at some of the actions of some members of Congress and the US Senate," stated Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.
Following a bilateral meeting and a speech in Sydney, Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, will still travel to Australia next week, according to Albanese. “I look forward to welcoming him to Sydney. He made me a very welcome guest in March, and he is the host of the G20 this year,” Albanese said to ABC Radio Brisbane. The Japanese prime minister, Fumio Kishida, was no longer expected to visit Australia. Albanese will attend the G7 summit that Kishida will be hosting this weekend. Kishida visited Perth late last year.
As a gesture to the ties between the countries between the Indian and Pacific seas, the Quad played a key role in developing the idea of the "Indo-Pacific" rather than the Asia-Pacific. Beijing perceives it as an attempt to oppose its growing power in the area. Richard Maude, a senior researcher at the Asia Society Policy Institute, believes that the cancellation of Biden's trip to Papua New Guinea, which would have been the first trip by an American president to an independent Pacific Island nation, could impede Washington's attempts to compete with Beijing for influence in the region. “The mantra in the region is all about turning up. Turning up is half the battle. China turns up all the time, and so the optics aren’t great,” Maude, a former Australian intelligence chief, stated in a panel discussion on the Quad on Wednesday.
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