For all of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s fiery rhetoric targeting China during Tuesday’s meeting in Tokyo of four of the most powerful democratic countries in the Indo-Pacific region, few concrete takeaways emerged from the talks.

But the symbolism of just showing up may have been part, if not the main point, of the dialogue.

At the second-ever ministerial talks involving officials from the “Quad” countries — Japan, India, Australia and the United States — all four agreed to hold another round of talks in the future. There was even some talk of regularizing the forum.