WASHINGTON—President Biden will meet virtually on Friday with the leaders of Australia, Japan and India, his first joint conversation with the four-nation group known as the Quad that has sought to counter China’s regional influence.
“That President Biden has made this one of his earliest multilateral engagements speaks to the importance we place on close collaboration with our allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday.
Ms. Psaki said the leaders would discuss climate change, economic cooperation and the coronavirus pandemic, but made no direct mention of China.
Since taking office, Mr. Biden and his top advisers have been laying the foundation of a strategy to work with foreign allies to confront Beijing. The Quad is a strategic group seen as a bulwark against Chinese expansionism.
During a recent phone meeting, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and his counterparts in the group committed to working together on the coronavirus pandemic and to countering Chinese territorial and maritime claims.