CHICAGO - Over the weekend, combat Veteran and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)—member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee and U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee—departed for a Congressional Delegation to the Indo-Pacific region that she arranged in her continuing efforts to strengthen ties and reinforce support between Southeast Asia and the United States. Building on her successful trip to the region earlier this year, Duckworth will be visiting Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines to meet with government and business leaders and discuss opportunities that would increase cooperation in areas of mutual interest, such as economic investments, regional stability and national security. As part of this trip, the Senator will also discuss the economic and emissions reduction benefits that expanding ethanol imports could have in the region.
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“Since I arrived in the Senate, I’ve been focused on making sure our partners across the Indo-Pacific know that the United States is here for them—and these visits are an important part of that effort,” said Duckworth. “In addition to reinforcing our support in the region, I am also committed to facilitating greater economic investments between our nations—as well as increasing ethanol exports from Illinois—and expanding cooperation while bolstering security. The United States and nations throughout the Indo-Pacific have long benefited as we’ve increased people-to-people interactions as well as exchanges of goods, ideas and more. I’m looking forward to my discussions with government as well as business leaders aimed at building on these efforts, in part because I believe they will also help support jobs and working families in Illinois and across our country.”
Duckworth is a proven leader on strengthening our relations with Indo-Pacific nations and security in the region while successfully securing significant international investments in Illinois. Earlier this year, she traveled to Japan to meet with government, trade and economic leaders as well as corporate and business officials to highlight how Illinois is uniquely positioned for greater investment and increased exports with international partners as a hub of agriculture manufacturing and technology. Following her last trip, Japan announced a regulatory change that will lead to an increase in imports from U.S. biofuel producers, supporting our farmers and growing Illinois’s economy.
Last year, she also traveled to South Korea and Taiwan where she met with business, government and trade leaders, which helped lead to a joint venture between Illinois’s ADM and South Korea’s LG Chem, as well as a commitment from Taiwan to purchase an estimated $2.6 billion of our Illinois’s corn and soybeans. Duckworth also successfully included a modified version of her Strengthen Taiwan’s Security Act in last year’s NDAA to help Taiwan strengthen its military defenses. In 2018, Duckworth visited South Korea and Japan. In 2019, Duckworth led a bipartisan delegation to Japan and Singapore.
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