The UK’s Indo-Pacific Tilt: Assessing Progress and Future Priorities

The Integrated Review set out the Government’s ambitions for the Indo-Pacific region, which included becoming a leading European presence in this dynamic theatre of economic and security activity. This role will need to be underpinned by the deployment of diplomatic, trading and development resources, as well as the cultivation of new and existing relationships. This event assessed the achievements the UK Government has made in its first year since the publication of the Review, and considered how best to take the agenda forward in the context of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the evolving geopolitical environment.

The event was held in person at the BFPG’s offices in central London, and hosted in conjunction with the D Group and British Expertise International.


Andrew Mitchell CMG is Director General for Exports and UK Trade at the Department for International Trade. In his role, he is responsible for the department’s work on exports, global supply chains, and UK regions and the devolved administrations. Previously Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioner for Europe, Andrew worked to promote the UK’s trade and investment interests with Europe. He has also held senior positions within the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and is the former Ambassador to Sweden.

Veerle Nouwens is a Senior Research Fellow at the International Security Studies Department of the Royal United Services Institute. Her work focuses on geopolitical relations in the Indo-Pacific region, particularly regarding China’s foreign policy, cross-strait relations, maritime security and ASEAN. Having previously worked for the European External Action Service at the Delegation of the European Union to Singapore’s Political, Press and Information Section, Veerle focused on EU-Singapore bilateral relations and Europe’s role in Southeast Asia.

Bill Hayton has been an Associate Fellow with the Asia-Pacific Programme at Chatham House since 2015, after a long career as as a journalist with BBC News since 1998. He was the BBC’s reporter in Vietnam in 2006/7 and spent a year seconded to the state broadcaster in Myanmar in 2013/14 working on media development. Bill is the author of three books on Asia: ‘The Invention of China’ (2020), ‘South China Sea: The Struggle for Power in Asia’ (2014) and ‘Vietnam: Rising Dragon’ (2010).

Sophia Gaston is the Director of the British Foreign Policy Group, specialising in threats to governance in advanced democracies and securing the future of the liberal world order. She has led two major studies at the BFPG on resetting UK-China relations, exploring how best to secure the UK’s vulnerabilities and facilitate a more confident, strategic approach to engagement. Sophia is a Research Fellow in the Institute for Global Affairs at the London School of Economics and Political Science, and an Academic Fellow at the European Policy Centre in Brussels.



BFPG Admin