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Kamala Harris’ trip to Southeast Asia: What it means for ASEAN and Asia

23 Aug Kamala Harris’ trip to Southeast Asia: What it means for ASEAN and Asia

Media Note

Kamala Harris’ trip to Southeast Asia: What it means for ASEAN and Asia

Singapore, Monday, 23 August 2021 – “Singapore is delighted to have US Vice President, Kamala Harris, here in her maiden visit to the region and it shows that the Americans get that Singapore, as small as we are, is an important player.”

Vice President Kamala Harris’ trip to the region comes amid the US’ pull-out from Afghanistan, after 20 years. “I think America’s withdrawal on Afghanistan can be better handled on the details, but the withdrawal was inevitable. I don’t take it that it means that America is somehow unreliable here in the Indo Pacific. I think America, since World War II, has been consistent in this region and it would remain so.” – Associate Professor Simon Tay, Chairman of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs


Associate Professor Simon Tay, Chairman of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs (SIIA), is able to comment on US Vice President Kamala Harris’ trip to Southeast Asia and what it means for US relations with the region.

The SIIA is a leading independent think tank based in Singapore which is part of the network of “track-2” think tanks in the region. Associate Professor Tay is concurrently a tenured Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, National University of Singapore. He has written and advised extensively on ASEAN, and on its relations with major powers including China.


For interviews and further comment, please contact the SIIA

Media Contacts
Rohini Nambiar
Senior Policy Research Analyst and Media (ASEAN)
Email:  [email protected] | Mobile: (65) 8892 9489

Seraphim Cheong
Director of Outreach and Special Projects
Email:  [email protected] | Mobile: (65) 9824 8423

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Established in 1962, the Singapore Institute of International Affairs (SIIA) is a non-profit and independent think tank committed to producing policy analysis, fostering in-depth dialogues and bridging gaps between policymakers, private sector decision-makers and experts to shape public policy and social responses. Centred around ASEAN focused themes, the institute aims to deliver policy analysis in international affairs and on issues driving environmental sustainability. The SIIA has been consistently ranked as one of the leading think tanks in Southeast Asia and the Pacific, in the Global Go-To Think Tank Index by the University of Pennsylvania. Since 2017, the SIIA was ranked the No. 1 independent think tank in Asia. It was also recognised as one of the top 50 think tanks globally, excluding the United States of America. In 2019, it was recognised as the No. 1 think tank in South, Southeast Asia and Pacific (excluding India).