Asia is the largest and fastest-growing continent on earth in terms of both nominal GDP and per capita GDP growth, and home to some of the longest modern economic booms: Japan’s economic miracle (from 1950-1990), Korea’s Miracle on the Han River (1961-1996), China’s economic growth through manufacturing expansion driven by foreign direct investment (1978-present), and India’s rise as a commodities producer and outsourcing destination for computer software services.
Asian wealth has long drawn European trade, exploration and colonialism; as well as being home to many religions and cultures across the globe. Asian cuisines are widely known to be some of the most varied and delectable around.
The United States has long maintained a presence in Asia and remains by far its most powerful nation. Military forces from its vast military establishment are present across its entirety since Cold War. Additionally, US economy depends heavily on trade and investment with Asian markets for economic benefits – many US citizens reaping these dividends through accessing high-quality consumer goods and services produced in Asia.
The Obama administration highlighted Asia’s crucial role in global stability; by contrast, President Donald Trump took an asymmetrical approach towards Asia; his focus was mainly confrontation with China while decreasing US engagement with countries that weren’t essential to America’s strategic interests such as ASEAN. Under Biden administration there has been renewed emphasis placed on Quad and its future success will depend on whether its priorities can balance with those in its region of influence.