28 November 2017
The Australian government has released a new White Paper to establish its foreign policy for the next decade. It comes 14 years after the last White Paper on Australia’s international relations. The latest Paper acknowledges that the international environment has changed significantly since the last one with increased complexity and more uncertainty. It also reflects the changes in Australia itself over the past 14 years.
The new Paper is largely focused on the challenges posed by the rise of China alongside uncertainty about the future of American engagement in the Indo-Pacific. It indicates that Canberra intends to prioritise cooperation with the United States and other like-minded regional stakeholders to balance against China’s increasingly assertive presence. However, while the Paper does not explicitly say so, it implies the US is no longer as reliable as it once was.
… Sam Bateman is a Senior Fellow in the Maritime Security Programme at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. He is a former Australian naval commodore who had several postings in the Strategic Policy area of the Department of Defence in Canberra.
IDSS / Online
Last updated on 28/11/2017