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Thursday 24 Aug 2017 | 17:35 | SYDNEY
Thursday 24 Aug 2017 | 17:35 | SYDNEY

Rudd's strategy: A seat at the table

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COMMENTS

8 June 2011 13:50

Kevin Rudd posted a tweet today from the ASEM Foreign Ministers' Meeting which epitomises his foreign policy approach:

Meetings today with foreign mins of China, Korea, Indonesia, Philippines and EU. V useful having everyone at one conference. KRudd

While Gareth Evans looked for 'niche' opportunities for Australia to have an impact, Rudd's interest is more straightforward: get Australia into the room where the deals will be done.

This idea runs through both his successes (securing G20 membership and hopefully a UN Security Council seat), his failures (the Asia Pacific Community) and his approach to international events (while left out at Copenhagen, he's inserted himself into the Libya discussions).

In many ways it's a smart strategy. Australia is a respected country with the 13th biggest economy in the world; we should be able to demand a voice in global discussions. And Rudd is as good a foreign policy operator as we have in the country.

On the downside, it's a rather blunt approach and very tied to Rudd's personal influence in each and every meeting. Its also a long, long way from Michael Wesley's suggestion to leave multilateralism in the bottom draw.

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