THREE QUESTIONS FOR THE QUAD'S INDO-PACIFIC SECURITY COMMITMENTS
Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Diplomatist|April 2021
Four national leaders of the US, Japan, Australia, and India met formally for a virtual summit that focused on a range of issues of common concern to the international community.
CHEE LEONG LEE

This, in itself, is a significant development considering that such security dialogue group has gone through ups and downs with regards to the issue of China, the group’s primary focus since its early birth. As for the East Asian region which is now re-branded into Indo-Pacific region by the Quad, the leaders’ summit is not just a signal for the security grouping’s commitment to achieve a “free and open Indo-Pacific”, but also a show of its capacity to roll out measures that will fulfill the needs of regional countries in this post-pandemic age.

Altogether, the Quad’s commitments fall into three main areas of security cooperation: COVID-19 vaccination, climate change as well as critical and emerging technologies. Among these, the Quad’s list of commitments on the COVID-19 vaccination is the most concrete of all featuring a special model of cooperation that utilizes American technology (vaccine) and funding (Development Finance Cooperation or DFC), Japanese additional financial assistance through Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Japan Bank Cooperation (JBC), Australian logistics support for vaccine delivery and Indian manufacturing of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and Novavax vaccines. Should such commitments materialize, as much as 1 billion of vaccine is expected be disbursed to ten Southeast Asian nations, nine Pacific Island countries, and Timor-Leste by the end of 2022?

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