British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has extended a very exclusive invitation to Australia as he seeks to build up the UK’s post-Brexit relationships.
The growing global push to combat China’s influence has led to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson inviting Australia to attend the G7 Summit in the UK next year.
The UK is trying to build its alliances in the wake of Brexit and in the face of increasing Chinese nationalism.
Downing Street announced this morning (AEDT) Australia had been invited alongside South Korea and India as guests to the summit, which will be hosted by the UK next northern summer.
“The Prime Minister has written to Prime Minister Modi to accept his invitation, and to invite India to attend the UK’s G7 Summit as one of three guest nations alongside South Korea and Australia – delivering the Prime Minister’s ambition to work with a group of like-minded democracies to advance shared interests and tackle common challenges,” Downing St said in a statement.
The Australian reports that the visit, Mr Johnson’s first major bilateral visit since taking office, and the first since the UK’s departure from the EU, “underlines his commitment to step up the UK’s engagement with the Indo-Pacific region”.
The invitation came as Mr Johnson said he would visit to New Delhi next month. He will be the first prime minister since Sir John Major to attend the annual Republic Day parade in New Delhi as guest of honour.
Similar to Australia and many western countries, Britain’s relationship with China has been on the decline in 2020, in part due to the national security law Beijing imposed on Hong Kong and the UK decision to ban Huawei Technologies.
The relationship between China and India is also showing cracks, particularly after confrontations between the two countries’ military forces in the Himalayas, with dozens of casualties.