Throughout spring and early summer, the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden has worked hard to demonstrate that as war rages in Ukraine and Washington and NATO are becoming more focused on Russia that the White House is still also focused on the Indo-Pacific region — especially at a time when China is increasingly isolated and distrusted in parts of Asia.

And that all creates a number of opportunities for Washington to exploit.

Until more recently, Biden had not made many calls to Southeast Asian leaders and was also slow to appoint ambassadors to several Asian countries, including the sending of an envoy to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, angering some governments in the region.