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Kurt Campbell to be appointed Indo-Pacific coordinator

Nikkei, Yomiuri, Asahi, and Sankei wrote that The Asia Group announced on Wednesday that President-elect Biden is planning to appoint its Chairman and CEO Kurt Campbell to the post of “coordinator for the Indo-Pacific,” which will be newly established at the White House. Nikkei speculated that the appointment of Campbell, a well-known Japan hand, is aimed at strengthening the United States’ ties with its allies amid China’s rise and that the position to be established at the National Security Council is expected to lead the Biden administration’s Asia policy, including that for China. The paper also conjectured that the establishment of the new post and Campbell’s appointment demonstrate the new administration’s policy of attaching importance to Asia. Asahi speculated that the Biden administration’s policy toward China may be tougher than that of the Obama administration because Campbell expressed the view after retiring from the post of assistant secretary of state that the United States’ policy of engagement with China achieved few results. Sankei conjectured that the appointment of Campbell to the new post may be intended to demonstrate to Japan, South Korea, and other allies the Biden administration’s intention to strengthen its engagement in Asia in view of the threat posed by China.

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