Rep. Ami Bera is new Chairman of Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation

Ami Bera

The Indian American congressman says “Asia is one of the most important and consequential regions of the world.”

Rep. Ami Bera, the dean of the Indian American congressional delegation, has been selected as the House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Chairman of the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation.

“I am honored to chair the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation. Asia is one of the most important and consequential regions of the world and the United States has deep and enduring ties to the continent,” the California Democrat said in a statement. “As Chair, I will work to ensure that the U.S. is utilizing all of our political, military, cultural, and economic tools to support our interests, and maintain and enhance U.S. commitments in Asia and the Pacific.”

Bera said that the “subcommittee will explore how effectively those tools are being used, including how to strengthen our allies and partners” within the Asia-Pacific region. “Finally, we need to remember that when we engage with the nations of Asia and the Pacific, our values and interests move hand-in-hand; countries which respect human rights and create space for civil and nongovernmental actors are those that prosper and guarantee long-term stability,” he added.

In the spirit of bipartisanship, the congressman said he is looking forward to working with the panel’s Ranking Member Ted Yoho, a Florida Republican, and other colleagues “to ensure a sustained U.S. strategy that helps foster a more stable, free, and open Asia.”

Bera, a past chair of the Congressional Caucus on India and Indian Americans, also serves as Co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Korea.

Previously, Bera chaired the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations. Texas Democrat Rep. Joaquin Castro will succeed the Indian American congressman as the chair of that committee.

“It was a tremendous privilege to serve as Chair of the Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations,” Bera said. “I’ll continue to be a forceful advocate for smart and strong diplomacy and development, which includes supporting and strengthening the State Department, USAID, and our diplomats and career officials. I have full confidence that Rep. Castro will be an excellent Chair of the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee moving forward.”

Bera, first elected to Congress from California’s 7 th congressional district in 2012, is the longest serving Indian American in the US House of Representatives.

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