U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs released this report on April 17, 2014. The report details "progress made on the non-military elements of the Obama administration's policy to pursue a strategic rebalance towards the Asia-Pacific region."
Excerpt of recommendations, from Senate press release:
The report includes the following recommendations:
- The United States government needs to approach the rebalance with a well-coordinated, whole of government approach that synchronizes and sequences the military-security elements and the diplomatic, economic and civil society elements, including targets and timelines, so that all move in a parallel and mutually reinforcing fashion.
- The rebalance should seek to encourage and shape the development of a positive and productive China that is fully supportive of regional norms and institutions and that plays by regional rules-of-the-road and international law.
- The United States should increase personnel and resources to the State Department's Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and expand and improve inter-agency coordination in the region.
- To better foster business, cultural and people-to-people connections, the State Department should redouble efforts to support U.S. students to study in the region, ensure faster processing for non-immigrant visas for tourism and conferences, and increase resources for public diplomacy.
- To strengthen economic relationships, the U.S. Government should create more capacity for strategic thinking on regional economic policy by creating an East Asia-Pacific office in the State Department's Economic & Business Affairs Bureau, filling vacant Foreign Commercial Staff (FCS) positions and increasing FCS posts in the region, and increasing USTR resources to pursue high-quality bilateral and regional trade agreements.
- The U.S. Government should increase development assistance funding to the region, look for opportunities for better coordination between export promotion and development agencies, institutionalize the success of the Lower Mekong Initiative, support ASEAN connectivity, and scale-up public-private partnerships and donor coordination.
- The U.S. Government should devote additional resources and support for the development of regional institutions, including for maritime security issues, and leverage U.S. expertise and capability in disaster response, humanitarian assistance and health issues.
- The U.S. Government should supplement bilateral hub-and-spokes alliances with a network-centric approach and enhance regional maritime domain awareness capabilities and coordination on maritime security issues.
- The U.S. Government should ensure that human rights and civil society institution-building efforts reflect the importance of these issues for U.S. interests and values, including expanding assistance programs that strengthen rule of law and support for institutions such as the Asia Foundation and East-West Center, which help advance U.S. values and interests in the region.