Why Germany is opening new chapter in its ties with the Indo-Pacific

New foreign policy guidelines point to not just the stakes but also how Berlin hopes to shape the outcome

An aerial view of the port of Duisburg, in western Germany. Goods from the Indo-Pacific region, including South and East Asia, accounted for over 20 per cent of Germany's trade balance in 2019. PHOTO: AFP

"We are sending a clear message today: The Indo-Pacific region is a priority of German foreign policy," declared Foreign Minister Heiko Maas earlier this month as he announced Germany's first comprehensive policy guidelines for this part of the world.

Many have asked: Why is Germany coming out with such a framework? Furthermore, how will it affect Germany's interactions with countries in the Indo-Pacific?

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