Background Press Name Previewing President Biden’s Journey to North Africa and Asia

Through Teleconference

3:09 P.M. EST
MODERATOR:  Nice.  Thanks, everybody, for becoming a member of.  As a reminder, this name is on background.  It’s attributable to senior administration officers.  And the contents of the decision are embargoed till the decision ends.
We needed to take a possibility to offer you guys some ideas on the approaching journey after which additionally take some questions.
As you guys know, we’re going to have extra info to share with you on different bilats and occasions as we get nearer to the journey, however simply needed to have the ability to begin the dialog sooner relatively than later.
So, in your consciousness and never for reporting, our audio system on the decision right now are [senior administration official], [senior administration official], and [senior administration official].
So we’re going to do some remarks on the high.  We’re going to undergo every leg of the journey, so simply bear with us.  After which we’ll take as many questions as we will. 

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Thanks.  So, the President will head to Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, on Friday, the place the U.N. Local weather Convention — COP27 — is underway.
Whereas he’s on the bottom, he’ll give a particular handle about our efforts to construct on the unprecedented work by the U.S. to scale back emissions and advance the worldwide local weather battle, and assist essentially the most susceptible construct resilience to local weather impacts.
And the President may even have a bilateral assembly with President El-Sisi of Egypt, who, after all, is internet hosting the COP.
The Biden administration is proud to be heading into this COP with historic momentum.  We’ve seen the USA go from a world laggard to a world chief in lower than 18 months.
And final yr, President Biden set an formidable objective of decreasing emissions by about — by not less than, relatively, 50 p.c in 2030.  And that’s from a 2005 baseline.  And this yr, we’re on observe to do this. 
Due to the Inflation Discount Act, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Regulation, and extra, we’re actually well-positioned to fulfill the targets that we’ve set in a means that we’ve by no means been previously. 
We additionally simply noticed the Senate vote on a bipartisan foundation to ratify the Kigali Modification to the Montreal Protocol, which in itself might assist forestall a half-degree Celsius of warming this century.
The President will arrive in Sharm on the finish of what they name “high-level week.”  And his speech might be a possibility to set the tone for the next week, the place the negotiations actually get underway in earnest.
He’ll have the chance to showcase U.S. management in tackling the local weather disaster at residence and overseas and to reveal how we’re mobilizing unprecedented ranges of private and non-private finance to associate with growing nations in decreasing their emissions and, specifically, in adapting to local weather impacts, in addition to the efforts that we’re resulting in decarbonize the so-called “laborious to abate” sectors like transport, and to drive multilateral progress by way of quite a lot of focused efforts such because the International Methane Pledge, which the President introduced final yr.
And the President may even converse to the necessity for the 196 events to the Paris Settlement to actually hold their eyes on the ball on the subject of accelerating formidable motion to scale back emissions, to maintain inside attain the objective of limiting warming to 1.5 levels.  We have to stay targeted.
So, lots to cowl, nevertheless it’ll be an vital go to at a very important time.  So I’ll flip it over to you, [senior administration official].  Thanks.
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Thanks very a lot for that laydown.  I’m right here.  Sorry, I forgot to unmute myself.
So, after Sharm, the President will journey to Pnom Penh, Cambodia, from November twelfth to thirteenth to take part within the annual U.S.-ASEAN Summit on November twelfth after which the East Asia Summit on November thirteenth.
The President may even have a bilateral assembly with Prime Minister Hun Sen of Cambodia, which is the 2022 chair of ASEAN.
And I believe that, you already know, this displays a following by way of on an institutionalization of the very stepped-up engagement with ASEAN and with Southeast Asia that now we have seen to this point within the administration. 
And I might simply remind everybody that in Could — so, final yr, on the finish of October, the President spoke on the digital U.S.-ASEAN Summit and digital East Asia Summit conferences that came about on the finish of October, chaired by Brunei, which didn’t have in-person attendance.  After which, in Could, the President hosted the U.S.-ASEAN Particular Summit, which was held for the primary time in Washington, D.C., and included dinner on the White Home.
I believe these two engagements — so final October, the President introduced over $100 million in investments in issues which might be vital for U.S.-ASEAN relations, considerably increasing our cooperation on well being, local weather, science and innovation, commerce facilitation, training, and extra. 
After which, in Could, the President introduced $150 million in extra funding in lots of of those identical areas, together with making an attempt to step up our engagement within the maritime area.
I believe that we see this as following by way of on the administration’s dedication to the Indo-Pacific, which I’m positive you noticed was highlighted as a high precedence within the Nationwide Safety Technique.  And — nevertheless it additionally displays the very robust and longstanding U.S. dedication to the Indo-Pacific area that goes again centuries and was actually stepped up, clearly, on the finish of World Battle Two.

I believe that in Cambodia you possibly can see the President lay out our imaginative and prescient for maintaining a tempo of enhanced engagement and making an attempt to additionally handle issues of significance to ASEAN in ways in which they — that they’re on the lookout for.

And so we’ll additionally deal with efforts to advertise respect for human rights, rule of legislation, and good governance, the rules-based worldwide order, and likewise to handle the continuing disaster in Burma.

I might simply observe that this follows as a part of a broader degree of engagements within the area that embody the President touring to Korea and Japan in Could — the host — the in-person Quad leaders assembly that came about in Tokyo in Could — the launch of the Indo-Pacific Financial Framework; the engagements with the Pacific Islands, together with the Vice President’s digital handle to the Pacific Islands Summit; in addition to the internet hosting of the U.S.-Pacific Islands Summit within the — on the finish of September. 

Additionally, the Vice President’s journey to Korea — to Japan and Korea.  After which, as I’m positive you noticed, the Vice President may even be going to Thailand for APEC as effectively, so the Philippines. 

So in our — and that is simply along with an entire host of engagements and visits in each instructions on the Cupboard and sub-Cupboard ranges.

So I believe that we additionally need to spotlight the enduring dedication to the rules-based worldwide order, together with within the South China Sea, in addition to discuss concerning the significance of peace and stability all through the area, together with, after all, throughout the Taiwan Strait.

So, with all these items, we really feel like it is a good method to proceed to advance and to actually present that we’re severe about institutionalizing the stepped-up ranges of engagement.


MODERATOR:  Nice.  [Senior administration official], over to you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Thanks, [moderator].  So, I’m going to speak concerning the President’s time in Bali and, specifically, across the G20.

Since coming into workplace, President Biden has been targeted on delivering for American households and constructing a resilient international financial system.

Due to the President’s financial plans, now we have pushed a traditionally robust financial restoration and given households at residence respiration room whereas additionally serving because the engine of (inaudible).

You all know the historical past of the G20: Fourteen years in the past, as we confronted a world monetary disaster, the G20 got here collectively because of U.S. management and allowed the world’s main economies to not solely allow us to recuperate collectively, but additionally to create a extra resilient international monetary system.
At the moment, we face challenges as effectively: a world financial system that faces severe headwinds because of Russia’s battle towards Ukraine, with rising meals and power costs impacting low- and middle-income nations essentially the most.
The President will head to Bali to work with G20 companions to put the foundations for a extra sustainable and inclusive international financial system that can help American households and susceptible nations and economies alike. 
He’ll start his time in Bali with a bilateral assembly with our G20 host, President Widodo of Indonesia.  He’ll thank President Widodo and Indonesia for the unimaginable work that they’re doing to host a profitable G20 and to underscore the significance of the U.S.-Indonesia Strategic Partnership.
I can simply say, by way of my very own travels to Indonesia as a part of the G20 course of, that focus, that power, that management from Indonesia has been on full show.  And I do know that the President seems forwards to visiting and seeing that firsthand.

G20 leaders will deal with a broad, in-depth agenda over the course of their few days collectively.  And I can assure you that the USA will present up and be on the desk.  We might be unapologetic in our protection of Ukraine.  We might be unapologetic in calling out Russia for its brutal battle.  And we may even work intently with our companions to handle the impacts of the battle.

As we take into consideration the President’s affirmative agenda with the G20, I’d spotlight three broad classes.

One is, you already know, working to handle the quick impacts of Russia’s battle on the worldwide financial system.  And, clearly, right here, meals safety and power safety are the highest of that listing and can proceed to be.

Secondly, I believe you’ll hear the President speak about investing within the inclusive economies of the longer term, round delivering game-changing initiatives to leverage non-public financing and shut the infrastructure hole between the superior economies and the remainder of the world.

Actually, President Biden will co-host an occasion on the G20 Summit wherein the USA and companions might be advancing the Partnership for International Infrastructure and Funding, PGII.

That is an effort, as a lot of you already know, that was launched this summer season in Elmau, alongside the G7, to mobilize $600 billion in financing over 5 years in low- and middle-income nations.

The President will announce new initiatives to ship high quality, sustainable infrastructure that makes a distinction in individuals’s lives all over the world, strengthens and diversifies our provide chains, creates new alternatives for American employees and companies, and advances our nationwide safety, along with lifting up and offering alternative to economies all over the world as effectively.
After which, lastly, you already know, you’ll hear the President speaking about steps we will take to construct a brand new financial ecosystem the place each nation will get a good shot.  This consists of vital points like debt reduction for susceptible nations.  Clearly, we’ve seen vital headwinds gathering, particularly for susceptible lower- and middle-income nations.  Debt is a crucial a part of that equation.  I count on the President will converse to that.
This agenda consists of leveraging the multilateral improvement banks to fund international challenges.  And it additionally consists of points like international well being, together with the U.S. and our $450 million pledge to the pandemic fund to shut the worldwide hole in financing for pandemic preparedness. 
So, nations representing greater than 80 p.c of the world’s GDP might be in a single place for the G20 Summit.  President Biden has demonstrated many times that we’ll focus not simply on constructing prosperity for our individuals, however individuals in every single place all over the world. 
We consider, the President believes it’s important for the G20 to behave on this important second and that there’s a plan to do exactly that when the President arrives in Bali subsequent week. 
I’ll go forward and pause and hand this again to [moderator]. 
MODERATOR:  Nice.  Thanks, guys.  If we might ask our moderator to please give out the instructions to ask a query, please.
(Directions given to ask questions.)
Q    Thanks.  I had a query about two of the three bilats that you just introduced, with El-Sisi in Egypt after which Cambodia.  Will the President carry up Alaa Abd El-Fattah’s case in Egypt in addition to Theary Seng’s case, who’s a U.S. citizen, in Cambodia?
After which secondly, is there every other bilats that you just guys can converse of which might be being arrange for any of the summits, together with the one we’ve been anticipating with Xi Jinping?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  I can take the primary query concerning the Egypt bilat.  Clearly, the President is attending COP27 to construct on the numerous work the U.S. has undertaken to advance the worldwide local weather battle and assist essentially the most susceptible construct resilience. 
He’ll be participating with Egyptian leaders to debate developments within the Center East and the U.S. dedication to stability by way of broader-integration diplomacy to finish conflicts within the area and deescalate tensions. 
Human rights will function prominently in these discussions, because the Biden administration is the primary to not concern a nationwide safety waiver for the FMF funding on human rights grounds.  And now we have and can proceed to induce the Egyptian authorities to launch political prisoners and undertake human rights-related authorized reforms.  And this course of has had some vital success, however we goal to see extra progress over the approaching months.
And to the case of the Alaa Abd El-Fattah, we stay involved about that case and the reported situation of his well being.  And now we have raised repeated issues about his case and his circumstances in detention with the federal government of Egypt. 
Because the President has acknowledged repeatedly, he won’t ever shrink back from elevating human rights with overseas leaders. 
[Senior administration official], I don’t know when you have something you need to add on to (inaudible)?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  I might simply completely agree with what was simply stated.  And I believe that, you already know, we don’t need to get forward of the particular dialogue.  However I believe you possibly can anticipate that the President will increase our views on the significance of supporting the aspirations of the Cambodian individuals for a affluent, democratic, impartial nation, and the significance of respect for human rights, together with, I believe, that — you already know, our concern about some particular circumstances. 
So, I don’t need to get forward of it, however I believe that you would be able to actually count on that that might be the intention to lift.
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  I might say, by way of every other information on extra bilats, there’s nothing extra to report at the moment. 
MODERATOR:  Thanks. 
Q    Hey, guys, thanks for doing this.  Two about Cairo.  One, can I simply observe up the query about Alaa?  Will the President name for Egypt to launch Alaa, as British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak did in his assembly with President Sisi?
And I need to ask about local weather and loss and harm.  I do know Particular Envoy Kerry has talked somewhat bit about this.  However are you able to go into what your response is to growing nations’ requires particular greenback pledges on loss and harm? It’s on the agenda.  After all, this yr, that’s a choice that’s been made, together with by this administration and others. 
However are you able to converse to a few of the resistance, it appears, that Kerry has been suggesting — and others — about attending to these particular numbers with specificity on how the nations who’re calling for loss and harm can obtain compensation?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  Thanks.  On the human rights issues, I don’t have something so as to add with the intention to get forward of a gathering that hasn’t occurred but, apart from — you already know, once more, that is that is one thing that has actually been raised a number of occasions incessantly, and the President has made clear he won’t shrink back from elevating human rights issues with overseas leaders.
On loss and harm, we’re completely dedicated to participating constructively on this concern and perceive, you already know, the depths of what climate-vulnerable nations are dealing with right here and the explanation they’re so targeted on the loss and harm facet of the Paris Settlement negotiations.  Completely, now we have a robust curiosity in doing no matter we will to assist handle the issues in solidarity with susceptible nations and with these communities.
You recognize, there have been quite a lot of actually helpful discussions within the final yr round finance for averting and minimizing and addressing loss and harm.  And we’re supportive of doing what we will to seek out the way in which to scale up associated finance, together with public finance, and recognizing that it is a multifaceted problem — loss and harm — and it requires equally multifaceted options.
So, I believe a few of the response is that we’re not but at some extent the place there’s one thing that we’re, you already know, agreeing to or disagreeing to.  There are a whole lot of totally different concepts being floated round, and at this level, all we will say is that we perceive the depths of this problem and we’re dedicated to working constructively, together with on the COP, to determine a means for the worldwide neighborhood to guarantee that the wants are met and that we’re addressing these issues in solidarity.
Q    Hey, guys.  Thanks for doing this.  I simply needed to take one other crack at Aamer’s query a few potential assembly with the Chinese language president whereas we’re there.  I do know you guys can’t verify something or say that it’s occurring, however clearly, this has been within the ether and one thing that you just guys have stated that you just’re making an attempt to arrange. 
So, I used to be questioning when you might simply discuss perhaps usually about what your hope for a best-case situation by way of engagement with the Chinese language throughout this journey is.  Is there hope that you just may get a rebuke of Putin and Russia out of the Chinese language in the way in which that the Germans have been in a position to just lately?  Any dedication on Taiwan?  Something on commerce?  Simply making an attempt to get an concept of what the agenda with China is.  Thanks.
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  (Inaudible) — I believe it’s simply untimely to talk to that when there’s information to report on this.  We’ll be again in contact at that stage. 
Q    Thanks a lot.  I’m sorry to pile on you with these questions on bilats with Chinese language officers, however is there a possible for a bilat with the Chinese language outgoing premier?
And simply normally, when assembly with high-level Chinese language officers, what are going to be the administration’s priorities?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  I might simply, you already know, repeat what we’ve stated — what I’ve stated beforehand, which is: I don’t have information to report on extra bilaterals past what we’ve already introduced.  If there may be information on that rating, we’ll be again in contact and discuss extra extensively then. 
MODERATOR:  Yeah, thanks.  I do know everybody has that query, but when there may be information to announce there, we are going to make certain to do — have a dialog with you all on what that might appear like.
Let’s go to our subsequent query, please.
Q    Hey, thanks for doing this.  I’ve a query concerning the G20.  A whole lot of diplomats and overseas leaders have type of questioned the usefulness of the G20 over the past years, simply given the shortcoming to realize consensus with nations like Russia and China.  And I’m questioning what the President’s view of the usefulness of the G20 is, heading into this summit.
And if I might ask a second query.  Former President Trump is suggesting he could announce a second run for — third run for president on November fifteenth, which is when President Biden might be on the G20.  Given what the President has stated previously about overseas leaders questioning how lengthy America might be again, does the President anticipate this dynamic to play any position in his discussions on the G20?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  When it comes to your first query, you already know, the President believes very centrally within the ongoing significance of the G20.  And as I stated in my very own remarks, the USA was important to lifting the G20 as much as the leaders degree 14 years in the past within the midst of the worldwide monetary disaster and continues to see the G20 because the discussion board the place 80 p.c of world GDP is beneath one roof, the place, you already know, the world can come collectively to speak by way of the vital challenges that we face. 
And I believe that, specifically, as I specified by my very own remarks, I believe the President has crafted an agenda out for this G20 that’s actually targeted on listening to and offering a plan for addressing a few of the stresses that, specifically, the non-G7/G20s of the rising world faces, (inaudible) whether or not that’s quick points round power and meals safety, which have been distinguished in our discussions with nations all over the world since Russia’s invasion, the pressures that these points are placing on households, on companies, on economies.  Secondly, targeted on points like closing the funding hole, significantly round challenges just like the clear power transition and digital infrastructure, international public well being, and gender inclusion. 
These are issues that, you already know, require motion from the world but additionally require U.S. management, and that’s what the President goes to be chatting with there, together with on the aspect occasions that I discussed.  After which a set of steps that may be taken to boost our — the world’s multilateral toolkit for grappling with and addressing shared challenges. 
You recognize, Jake and plenty of others have spoken to the centrality of shared transnational challenges as a core defining function of this second and of our nationwide safety technique. 
And the G20 is a spot to actually spotlight and underscore the work that we’re doing there — whether or not that’s round reform of the World Financial institution and different multilateral improvement establishments; whether or not that’s working to launch and put into place a robust pandemic preparedness fund; whether or not that’s, once more, sort of taking steps with respect to issues like closing the infrastructure and funding hole. 
You recognize, these are all points which might be and have — that basically converse to the second that we’re in and likewise require a gathering just like the G20 to talk to that by way of the fullness of the nations in components of the world with the influence. 
So, all that goes again round to the truth that, you already know, the G20 is a crucial discussion board.  It’s a discussion board that — that has no actual substitute by way of the breadth of nations which might be in a position to come collectively and converse to those matters. 
And lastly, it’s additionally a discussion board the place at the same time as we handle every of those core points, you already know, we’re going to, you already know, sort of not shrink back for a second from calling out Russia’s battle of aggression, calling out the truth that that battle has brought about huge disruptions within the international financial system, specifically for susceptible nations. 
And this, too, is a crucial a part of what the President might be seeking to do on the G20 as effectively.
Q    Thanks a lot.  I ponder when you might discuss somewhat bit about how the President plans to method the connection with Saudi Arabia on the G20, given the broader evaluation of the connection that’s happening and likewise the scrutiny he got here beneath for the fist bump he gave MBS throughout his go to over the summer season.  And will you additionally say if the President will take part in a household photograph if Vladimir Putin does attend the convention?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:  So, you already know, no particular information right here past what you’ve already heard from the President on Saudi Arabia.  I believe that, you already know, he has articulated his perspective with respect to the choices they’ve made by way of OPEC+; has articulated that it is a relationship broadly that he’s — that he’s, you already know, reconsidering the totally different dimensions of.
And, you already know, I’m not going to get forward of something that — past that, apart from to say that — you already know, that the President has acknowledged that and that’s ongoing.  I believe what he’s going to be targeted on the G20 is precisely the listing of points that I simply walked by way of. 
And people are the — the problems that outline our second, outline the issues that we hear day in and day trip from nations all over the world, and the problems which might be core to having an affirmative agenda that may permit nations to handle these.
Q    Yeah, thanks a lot for doing this.  And sorry about not unmuting.  I’ve a query.  It’s extra concerning the G20 and concerning the temper with the Europeans.  The EU is fairly upset about that Inflation Discount Act and particularly about electrical automobile subsidies.  They’re on the lookout for methods to reply.  And the German finance minister just lately stated, and I quote, “I’m undecided whether or not the administration is conscious of our issues.” 
So my query is, principally: Is the administration conscious of this concern?  And is that this one thing the President will focus on with European companions on the G20?  And are you involved that it’d influence the broader transatlantic relationship and perhaps evolve right into a — you already know, an open commerce battle?
SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL:   So, I assume just a few ideas right here.  You recognize — one, you already know, the President, the administration as an entire has been completely dedicated to transatlantic unity not simply because the begin of the administration, however, after all, particularly because the begin of Russia’s brutal battle towards Ukraine.
That has mirrored itself throughout any variety of totally different priorities, whether or not it’s been our shared method on sanctions.  But it surely’s additionally mirrored itself in some core financial priorities.  Clearly, this has been an especially difficult second for Europe’s power safety.  We, in the USA, for our half, have turned over each stone to assist Europe meet its power challenges.
You recognize, when you sort of have a look at, for instance, U.S. LNG exports now versus 15, 16 months in the past, our total LNG exports are up by over 20 p.c.  Our LNG exports to Europe are up by nearly an element of three, reflecting the huge reallocation that’s been underway from Asia to Europe, by way of the vacation spot, for U.S. LNG exports.

That simply, I believe, highlights the extent to which transatlantic unity, the extent to which serving to Europe meet the challenges that Russia’s battle has offered to their financial system has been, sort of, very entrance of thoughts for President Biden and a core precedence for this administration.

You recognize, with respect to the IRA, you already know, sure, we’re, right here, conscious of these issues.  Actually, you already know, I might level you to — [redacted] was in Berlin two weeks in the past.  There was — [redacted] sat down with President von der Leyen’s chief of employees, Bjoern Seibert, there.  Popping out of that assembly, we introduced a dialogue between the EU and the USA to talk to each alternatives that the IRA presents for EU economies, for EU corporations, in addition to challenges and issues that a few of those self same nations and those self same corporations really feel with respect to the IRA.

We had our first assembly of that — of that grouping final week.  We count on extra conversations to observe on as quickly as this week, by way of, you already know, actually persevering with to additional that dialogue — additional, each, once more, this type of understanding across the issues and challenges that Europe faces and feels, but additionally the alternatives which might be — which might be offered by the Inflation Discount Act.  And that is only a dialogue that we count on to proceed to stay a constructive, targeted associate on.

As a result of, once more, finish of the day, crucial factor is that we preserve deal with transatlantic unity on dealing with these widespread challenges collectively.  And that’s exactly why we’re working to (inaudible) these out by way of channels just like the dialogue I simply talked about.
MODERATOR:  Nice.  Thanks, all.  So, we’re out of time.  However as I stated earlier, we are going to proceed to seek out alternatives to speak extra concerning the journey and make extra bulletins, so we might be in contact with you on that.

As a reminder, this name was on background, attributable to
“senior administration officers.”  And the contents — the embargo on the contents of the decision have now lifted.  Have a very good remainder of your day.

3:45 P.M. EST

Leave a Comment