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US will increase economic engagement with Asian nations, White House official says

Amer Asia ReportThe United States will step up economic engagement with countries in Asia in 2022, White House Indo-Pacific coordinator Kurt Campbell said this week. Campbell, a key official shaping the Biden administration's Asia policy, said that Washington would push for a more comprehensive approach in its Asian engagements in the coming year. "That's an area where the United States, indeed, needs to step up its game," Campbell said on Thursday at a virtual event hosted by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Campbell said that the US would accelerate efforts on economic ties, and that such engagement must include the setting of digital and technological standards. "We've got to make clear that we have an open, engaged, optimistic approach to commercial interactions, investment in the Indo Pacific," he said. "I think we well understand inside the Biden administration that 2022 will be about these engagements comprehensively across the region," Campbell added. "This is a larger engagement in which we need to work with allies and partners, so the most consequential element of our China policy … is in the region surrounding China, working with allies and partners … ensuring that we're working for common purposes." Campbell also stressed that Washington was not seeking "domination" and pledged to step up cooperation with Beijing on issues such as climate change. "Ultimately what the United States seeks is a kind of coexistence with China, with an understanding of China's critical and important role," he said. "I think everyone recognises that the most important element of the next 10 years is to bring China more into the global framework associated with climate."

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