UK wants closer ties with Indo-Pacific region: Official

HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier leaves Portsmouth Naval Base on the south coast of England, on May 1, 2021, to take part in exercises off Scotland before heading to the Indo-Pacific region. The HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier will leave Portsmouth later to take part in exercises off Scotland before heading to the Indo-Pacific region for her first operational deployment. Accompanied by six royal navy ships, a submarine and carrying eight RAF and 10 US jets she will replace HMS Ocean as the fleet flagship. AFP/Adrian Dennis. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

LONDON, Sep 28, 2022, Reuters. Britain is committed to forming ever closer links with the Indo-Pacific region, including greater economic, security and defence cooperation, foreign minister James Cleverly will say in a speech in Singapore on Thursday, Reuters reported.

Cleverly, whose trip to the region has also included visits to Japan and South Korea, will tell the audience of business, finance and academic leaders that Britain is set to have “the broadest, most integrated presence in the Indo-Pacific by 2030”.

Britain is seeking to join the trans-Pacific trade pact known as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which removes 95% of tariffs between its 11 members.

“We intend to be the first European country to accede to the CPTPP – which will give the region access to the UK’s world-class financial services sector and the world’s sixth largest economy,” he will say, according to extracts of his speech released in advance by his office.

“We are also working closely with countries in the Indo-Pacific to drive prosperity and growth through new trade opportunities.”

Cleverly will warn China that when it “departs from global rules and norms, when it aligns itself with countries like Russia – its standing in the world suffers. China will always have a choice about the direction it wants to take.”

“The UK government will always stand up for our sovereignty and economic security – and that of our partners. And no UK government will ever turn a blind eye to repression wherever it occurs,” he will add.

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