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A New, ‘Open’ and Democratic World Order

Writing for the Independent, Kim Sengupta reports that Britain will help shape a new global order and leave behind an “outdated” international system which no longer serves the country’s interests, Boris Johnson’s government has declared ahead of the integrated review of defence, security, and foreign policies.

Above: HMS Queen Elizabeth at Glen Mallan

© Jane Barlow/PA Wire/PA Images

As well as laying out plans focusing on cyberwarfare in defence, and new counterterrorism initiatives, the review will outline how post-Brexit Britain will seek to build strategic and commercial alliances away from Europe, especially in the Indo-Pacific region.

The prime minister will launch the east-of-Suez initiative during a visit to India later this month. The keen interest in strengthening ties in the area has already been illustrated by the invitation issued to India, Australia and South Korea to join the G7 summit after the UK assumed presidency of the group this year.

The Indo-Pacific is “increasingly the geopolitical centre of the world”, No 10 said, stressing that the review would make clear that “there will be some shifts” in the UK’s international policy.

“The UK is applying for partner status at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and at the end of April the prime minister will travel to India on his first major international visit following our departure from the EU”, a spokesperson said.

There are also plans to apply for membership of the 11-state Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). “The UK cannot rely solely on an increasingly outdated international system to protect our interests and promote our values. Instead, it will establish a new government foreign policy of increased international activism and a UK that works, alongside our allies and using all the tools at our disposal, to shape a more open international order in which democracies flourish”, said Downing Street.