UK's Truss to visit southeast Asia to boost economic and security ties

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LONDON (Reuters) - British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss will travel to Malaysia on Sunday as part of a week-long visit to southeast Asia aimed at deepening economic and security ties in the region, her office said.

Truss will also visit Thailand and Indonesia, chosen to reflect their "growing economic and diplomatic heft", as post-Brexit Britain looks to strengthen relations with nations and regions beyond Europe.

"I want to position Britain where the future growth is and to think about who our major partners will be in 2050 and beyond," Truss said in a statement.

"Southeast Asia will be the engine of the global economy and I want Britain to be part of that, upgrading our economic and security relations with the region to reflect its growing importance."

The Foreign Office said Truss would look to build closer ties on infrastructure investment into the region.

She will meet with the leaders and foreign ministers in Malaysia and Thailand, with topics for discussion including defence cooperation and trade, as well as deeper digital and tech investment and security collaboration.

Truss will also hold talks on foreign policy issues such as Myanmar and Afghanistan with her Indonesian counterpart, and seek closer ties on counterterrorism and cyber security.

(Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; Editing by Gareth Jones)

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