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Biden In East Asia


U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, left, is greeted by Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan prior to their meeting at Kan's official residence in Tokyo Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2011. (AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye)

Vice President Joe Biden's week-long trip to East Asia is a reflection of the United States' broader effort to expand its engagement in Asia.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, in remarks at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People on his first trip to East Asia as the Vice President of the United States, emphasized the importance of a close relationship with China because "the economic stability of the world rests in no small part on the cooperation between the United States and China."

Vice President Biden's week-long trip to East Asia, which included four days in China, one day in Mongolia, and two days in Japan, is a reflection of the United States' broader effort to expand its engagement in Asia, because the United States is a Pacific power whose interests are inextricably linked with Asia’s economic security and political order.

White House officials said in advance of Vice President Biden's trip that it will also present him an opportunity to build a relationship with Vice President Xi Jingping, who is likely to be the next president of China. "Simply put, we’re investing in the future of the U.S.-China relationship," they said.

Mongolia, the next stop in Vice President Biden's trip, has made a successful transition to democracy and has become a partner with the United States on a broad range of diplomatic, economic, and security issues. Mongolia, which adopts an activist approach to strengthening democratic principles throughout the world, is taking over this year the chairmanship of the Community of Democracies. "This visit to Mongolia is a reflection of our broader effort to engage emerging powers as a way to build a secure, prosperous, and democratic Asia," the White House officials emphasized.

Finally, Vice President Biden's visit to Japan underscores that the U.S.-Japan alliance remains strong, and that the United States stands with Japan and the Japanese people as they recover from the March earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear emergency.

The policy approach of the United States has always been built on strengthening U.S. alliances and expanding cooperation with emerging powers, and working with all the Asian countries to help to develop regional institutions in the Asia-Pacific region.

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