Biden welcoming Australian leader to White House for state dinner in October

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will welcome Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese to the White House on Oct. 25 for the visit and state dinner that the U.S. promised when Biden had to scrap a stop in Australia earlier this year to focus on debt limit talks in Washington.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement Wednesday that the visit would “underscore the deep and enduring alliance between the United States and Australia and the two nations’ shared commitment to supporting an open, stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific.”

Biden last May curtailed an Asia-Pacific trip that was to have included stops in Australia and Papua New Guinea because he needed to return to Washington because of the debt limit crisis.

The scuttling of two of the three legs of the overseas trip — Biden did visit Japan for a Group of Seven summit with leaders of some of the world’s major economies — was a foreign policy setback for an administration that has made putting a greater focus on the Pacific region central to its global outreach.

Albanese said in a statement his visit would be “an important opportunity to discuss our ambitious climate and clean energy transition, and shared goal of a strong, secure and prosperous Indo-Pacific.”

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