President Obama’s absence at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting left China’s President Xi Jinping as the dominant leader at a gathering devoted to greater economic integration, despite the backdrop of other Asian nations grappling with Beijing over territorial disputes.
Enter Australia, which over the past decade has balanced its economic and security ties to position itself as the "Switzerland of the Pacific," a role that was accentuated by its recent entry into the UN Security Council and 2014 chairmanship of the G20. The new government’s landslide election victory signified a structural shift and return to a values based strategic foreign policy with global implications. The Asian Pacific region represents 40% of the world’s population and 54% of world GDP, and is driven by a rising middle class, insatiable demand for natural resources, and huge foreign reserves. As economic and political influence shift east, this discussion explores Australia’s evolving role in Asian security and how the US’s strongest ally in the region can get the Asia Pivot back on track.
About the Speaker
Jeremy Balkin is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum and former Policy Adviser to a senior Minister in the new Australian government. He is currently a Finalist in the prestigious Young Australian of the Year Awards, recognizing his work in philanthropy across the region. He will be in New York to give a TED talk on October 25 and run the ING New York Marathon.
About the Sponsors
A center for global thought leadership, the World Policy Institute is uniquely focused on the crucial but neglected challenges and opportunities of an increasingly connected world. We stress innovative, transformative thinking; diversity of ideas, and a global perspective. World Policy Journal, fellows, events, and policy projects provide channels for supporters, thought leaders, decision makers, experts, and citizens to identify, debate, and develop constructive solutions.
The Political Salon – organized by Steve Sokol since 2003 to promote dialogue among the next generation of leaders in business, policy, and the media – regularly convenes a diverse group of young professionals to discuss a range of foreign policy issues and global affairs. Attendees are diverse in terms of nationality, profession, and political persuasion.
With special thanks to the Heinrich Böll Foundation for supporting the Political Salon.