Just 24 hours after taking the oath of office as Australia’s 31st Prime Minister Anthony Albanese will slip his feet under a table full of powerful international leaders.
A one-day visit to Tokyo in a flash to meet with US President Joe Biden, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishido and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for a quadripartite security dialogue will be an immediate test of foreign policy.
Leaders will gather in the shadow of Beijing’s growing ambitions for the region and the recent official signing of a security pact between China and the Solomon Islands during the Australian election campaign.
Diplomatic talks, known as the Quartet, are also expected to cover climate policy, an area Anthony Albanese has named as his key legacy to the prime minister.
During a flight to Tokyo, Anthony Albanese was in contact with another key strategic ally, holding a 25-minute conversation with British leader Boris Johnson.
Sources in the Australian government described the discussion as “friendly and very positive”. along with climate policy.
Mr Albanese is also expected to meet face-to-face with all three Quad leaders.
While China’s growth is likely to dominate, there will be significant discussions about climate commitments.
So far, Labor has agreed to cut emissions by 43 percent by 2030.
It is unclear whether the situation in Ukraine will be raised to a detailed level, a painful moment for India, which has so far decided not to impose any sanctions against Russia in connection with the invasion.
It is likely that cyber warfare and the ongoing consequences of pandemic efforts will also be on the table.
The Prime Minister’s plane, formerly known as “Shark 1” for Scott Morrison’s favorite rugby team, the Cronulla Sharks, is now being rebranded with a new nickname under consideration, “Toto 1”, honoring Mr. Albanese’s dog.
Anthony Albanese’s nominee for Foreign Minister Penny Wong accompanied him on this Japanese flying visit, where she is expected to meet with her counterparts on the sidelines of the talks.
Before boarding the plane, she recorded a video message for the Pacific.
“I became foreign minister at a time when our region is facing unprecedented challenges, but we will face these challenges together.”
“We want to help build a stronger Pacific family.”
Following the discussion, Quad will focus even more on the reactions of these Pacific countries and on which family they have chosen to reunite with.