The forthcoming virtual summit between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison assumes considerable significance for an India-Australia strategic partnership, particularly as it comes against the backdrop of heightened friction with China for both countries.
The tale has become accepted diplomatic folklore. In the telling, it was Australia, back in 2008 in the early days of the Rudd government, that decided to scuttle the then-nascent Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, the four-way talks also involving Japan, the United States and India. To compound
China’s rise and assertive behaviour has been a source of concern to both India and Australia. While India prioritises its territorial disputes with China and China’s growing presence in the Indian Ocean, Australia is concerned about growing tensions in Sino-US relations and the undesirable
Australia has not usually had a high profile in the Indian Ocean island states such as Seychelles, Mauritius and Madagascar. This despite Australia’s huge Indian Ocean littoral, presence of three oceanic territories, mutual Commonwealth links and substantial investment. Inter-governmental visits
“Flattery with a catch” is the best way to describe Donald Trump’s call to include Australia in an expanded Group of 7 meeting, or G7.
No doubt Canberra would love a seat at the top table. But the US President has also proposed bringing Russia back into the fold – which will be
Remarkably, for all the international attention on the plight of the Yazidi back in 2014 as Islamic State ravaged Iraq, it has taken until now, six years later, to bring the first charges of genocide.
A trial commenced last month in a German court of a man accused of murdering a Yazidi girl traded
China’s decision to impose heavy tariffs on Australian barley and the alleged connection with Australia’s call for an independent international investigation into the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic has been widely and intensively reported in recent weeks. What is more important now is to
Leaders of nations around the globe have resorted to the language of warfare to characterise their fight against Covid-19. From US President Donald Trump, who declared himself a “war president”, to China’s Xi Jinping committing to a “people’s war”, to Britain’s Prime Minister Boris
As India and Australia prepare for a virtual summit next month between prime ministers amid the coronavirus pandemic, a possible strategic initiative could involve the cooperative use of their respective island territories in the Indian Ocean for strategic purposes. India’s Andaman and Nicobar
Retail therapyWhen even the normally unflappable Trade Minister Simon Birmingham bluntly tells business to reduce ties with the country that has underpinned the Australian economy for two decades, a mood shift is afoot. It took some prodding, but Birmingham finally broke cover at the end of his ABC&
When the world is grappling with the kind of calamity few of us have experienced before, it can be easy to forget other crises. Climate change springs to mind. So, too, does the record level of human displacement around the world, a problem largely driven by conflict.
That brings us to the long-
A new narrative, advanced by the “wolverines” and like-minded commentators, is emerging and solidifying within Australia’s China “debate”. This narrative casts disliked Chinese policies as attacks on Australian sovereignty, and thus any problem in the bilateral relationship is instantly
In Episode 11 of COVIDcast, Jonathan Pryke, Director of the Pacific Islands Program, sat down with Dave Sharma, Liberal member for the federal seat of Wentworth, to discuss strengthening ties between Australia and the Pacific, and a potential Australia‒Pacific travel “bubble”. Sharma has
If the 15th-century philosopher Niccolò Machiavelli were alive today, he would surely have recognised the power of surveillance technologies that states such as China, Singapore, South Korea, and others have adopted in the fight against Covid-19. Patrol robots and drones, CCTV cameras and
While much has been written about Covid-19’s lasting effects on the world order, one aspect is becoming more evident: the world after the pandemic may not look so different to the one before it. As prominent US commentator Richard Haass writes, “Covid-19 will not so much change the basic
Last weekend news broke that the Chinese government was considering imposing large tariffs on Australian barley exports. Now, China-bound exports from four Australian meat processors have been suspended.
Following Australian calls for an independent inquiry into the early handling of Covid-19,
It’s got nothing to do with Covid-19, but a fascinating short passage in Malcolm Turnbull’s new memoir is illustrative of the challenges Scott Morrison faces in dealing with US President Donald Trump, and how much Australia can rely on the US as it squares off in an increasingly sharp rhetorical
Foreign Editor for The Australian, Greg Sheridan, got his hands on a copy of the yet-to-be-released Defence Strategic Update, and he wrote about it over the weekend.
The Strategic Update is yet to pass through cabinet, but if Sheridan’s account is accurate and the recommendations are
For Myanmar, the onset of Covid-19 has sparked a renewed crackdown in Rakhine and Chin states. These developments may not capture widespread attention – particularly as relations with China become increasingly fraught – yet they cannot be ignored, and must be recognised as a serious
A calculated leak? – Ben Scott
Local newspapers have published remarkable claims detailing Australia’s reported concern about suggestions coming out of Washington that the outbreak of Covid-19 may have been the result of an accident at a laboratory in Wuhan rather than coming from an
Health v growth
The language of lockdown has certainly undergone a change, from Prime Minister Scott Morrison advocating six months of hibernation only a month ago to now warning the country cannot stay under the doona much longer.
But it is no surprise the government's rhetoric has shifted to
The success in containing the Covid-19 pandemic in both Australia and New Zealand has led to a novel idea – the opening up of trans-Tasman travel as long as each country is able to keep infections under control. It would be a ray of hope and normalcy, and an economic plus for both parties. While
While the Canberra political establishment has been sparring with China’s Foreign Ministry – and with Australian billionaires – much of the corporate elite has begun puzzling how to slipstream China’s post–Covid-19 economic recovery.
Optimists hope that Beijing will summon a massive
Jon Philp, who commenced as Australian High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea early this month, is the 16th to serve as Australia’s lead diplomatic representative in Port Moresby. I know from experience that the role is unlike any other in the Australian foreign service. The incumbent has the
There are many reasons the world needs an independent inquiry into the origins of the novel coronavirus. After all, the pandemic has infected nearly three million people and taken around 200,000 lives worldwide, at latest count. And the world should push for one at the appropriate time. Properly and
One of the (many) astounding things that have come out of the Covid-19 crisis is just how fragile are Australia’s connections with the outside world. The government’s role in guaranteeing Australia’s communications, whether digitally or by sea or air, is one of the things that we will need to
This year, Anzac Day is different. The coronavirus pandemic has prompted the enforcement of measures to keep people physically apart and the cancelling of public gatherings and events, including Anzac Day services and marches. This leaves Australians and residents who had planned to attend Anzac Day
Of all the regions in the world, the twin health and economic crises caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have the potential to hit the Pacific the hardest.
Pacific Island nations supported Australia during our bushfire crisis, sending members of their defence forces and making donations to communities
Since it was first identified in the early 1980s, HIV/AIDS has infected an estimated 78 million people and killed 35 million. Although there have been significant advances in treating HIV, there is still no cure and no vaccine.
So there is a bitter sweet irony in the fact that Australian trials
The Morrison government needs to urgently consider how it might best help Indonesia manage the economic risks posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Indonesia faces a perilous outlook. The government is struggling badly to control the virus. Making matters far worse, Indonesia has also been among
When the Australian government asserted control over all new foreign investment two weeks ago in response to Covid-19, the move was sugar-coated with the reassurance the country was still open for business.
But with Prime Minister Scott Morrison now declaring his
Every government is struggling with the Covid-19 crisis, with one eye to the post-coronavirus world. In this context, it may be worth looking at the French perception of Australia and their prospects, and need, for enhanced cooperation after the crisis.
France increasingly sees Australia as a key
As Covid-19 spreads around the globe, it is precipitating a series of other shocks, one of which is a crisis in human movement. Australia, as one of the key migrant-receiving nations globally, is particularly affected.
The migration crisis currently unfolding in Australia is primarily one of
As important as the health risks posed by the coronavirus pandemic and its containment are, leaders also need to start to think about the shape of the post–Covid-19 global economy.
If they don’t, we all face a serious risk of succumbing to the new anti-globalisation protectionism that is on
What do the East Timorese defence force, “clean coal”, women’s empowerment, and Kevin Rudd’s first-term government have in common?
The answer is the year 2020.
Back when 2020 felt like a halcyon time far-far away, this was the year that, respectively, the Government of Timor-Leste, the
The announcement by the Duterte administration last month that it will terminate the 1998 Philippines-US Visiting Forces Agreement will likely also raise questions about the future of the Australia-Philippines political and security relationship. Australia and the US are the only two countries that
COVIDcast is a Lowy Institute pop-up podcast for anyone interested in understanding the effect of coronavirus on global politics. Each week for the next few weeks, Lowy Institute experts will sit down to discuss the implications of coronavirus for the world. To listen to the first episode, click
The title alone is enough to make senior members of Australia’s intelligence community shudder.
And fair enough – Australia’s intelligence agencies are a well-reviewed community; there have been three over the past decade (in 2011, 2017 and another due this year).
Senior figures including
A review is underway into Australian aid policy, with consultations run across the country, and the public, scholars, and aid groups alike offering submissions – some of which are expected to be released in the coming weeks. Early indications from the Minister for International Development and
In 2020, the Commonwealth’s much-heralded Modern Slavery Act (MSA) obliges Australian companies above a consolidated revenue threshold of $100 million to report on their policies and actions relating to ending modern slavery in their supply chains.
The issue of modern slavery is fraught, complex
Parts of India’s national capital have been rocked by the worst communal violence in decades, leaving more than 40 dead.
The violence took place just as Australia’s Trade Minister Simon Birmingham led a large trade delegation to the country, with talk in the lead-up to the visit about the
Clayton Christensen’s 1997 book The Innovator’s Dilemma provides a series of compelling examples of companies ignoring or dismissing the disruptive potential of immature technologies until it’s too late, only for their upstart competitors to consign them to the dustbin of
The International Energy Agency (IEA) is an intergovernmental organisation focused on ensuring reliable, clean, and affordable energy for its 30 member states. To achieve this aim, member states are required to hold oil stockpiles, allowing states to coordinate a collective response to major
The rise of Asia and growing superpower competition pose serious challenges for countries such as Australia and Israel, and they should face them together. On the one hand, Asia’s economic dynamism offers access to new and growing markets; on the other hand, changing regional dynamics in Asia have
Australia’s definition of the “Indo-Pacific” currently includes much of the Pacific Ocean as well as the eastern Indian Ocean, but excludes the western Indian Ocean. This is no longer a sensible or useful way of defining our region. Australian policymakers need to include the island states of
The visit by Indonesia President Joko Widodo (“Jokowi”) to Canberra this month brought fresh hope of cooperation between the two nations. With Jokowi bringing the freshly ratified Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA-CEPA) as a “gift” for Australia, most of
Since mid-2019, I have often been asked about fires, which is somewhat odd, as I teach Politics and International Relations at the University of New South Wales, and my research mainly involves issues of global governance and developing countries. But as a Brazilian living in Sydney, I’ve been
It is notable that while the three old Cs (curry, cricket, and the Commonwealth) still reappear at Australia-India gatherings, this week’s Indonesian summitry occurred with little reference to the parallel three Bs (boats, beef, and Bali).
These two strange neighbours seem
To have experienced one catastrophe could be regarded as fortunate. To go through a second could be, as Oscar Wilde would have it, careless.
Having survived a bushfire emergency, the likes we’ve not witnessed before, only three months ago, I’m now writing this watching a thunderstorm break
Dealing with China in 2019, particularly its attempts to interfere in Australia’s domestic politics, was tough work for the government. Unfortunately, the China challenge is likely to get harder in 2020 and for every year after, and foreign interference won’t even be the biggest concern.