16 Jul 2021

Ardern, Biden phone call addresses 'rules-based Indo-Pacific'

2:27 pm on 16 July 2021

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has spoken with US President Joe Biden this morning, ahead of an informal APEC meeting on Covid-19.

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Photo: RNZ / Samuel Rillstone

Ardern said the pair talked about the upcoming APEC leaders' meeting being held tonight and the importance of working together to navigate out of the pandemic.

They also addressed the stability of the Indo-Pacific region, trade and investment, and the domestic and Pacific vaccine roll-outs.

"The United States and New Zealand share many common values and interests, including a commitment to an open and rules-based Indo-Pacific," she said in a statement.

"I raised the importance of strengthening the economic architecture in the region post-Covid in order to facilitate greater trade and investment."

Ardern said she thanked Biden for joining the Christchurch Call and was looking forward to continuing to build a strong relationship with the United States.

The White House also released a statement, also focusing on discussion of a "free and open Indo-Pacific region", efforts to support the global economic recovery and to end the Covid-19 pandemic.

"President Biden commended Prime Minister Ardern for her steadfast and effective leadership throughout the pandemic. President Biden expressed US support for the Christchurch Call to Action. They also discussed our cooperation on and engagement with Pacific Island nations."

"They agreed on the importance of multilateral institutions and economic cooperation throughout the region."

Ardern also posted on social media a photo of herself taking the call.