Turnbull Meets With Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe have held a press briefing, following their talks in Sydney.

Abe

The two leaders spoke of their commitment to free trade and open markets. Turnbull said that both countries are committed to the Trans Pacific Partnership because “protectionism is not a ladder to get us out of the low growth trap, rather a shovel to dig us deeper into it”.

Abe said: “To ensure free and open international order based on the rule of law, our bilateral cooperation and trilateral cooperation with the United States is of course important.”

  • Listen to the Turnbull-Abe press briefing (21m)
  • Watch the press briefing (21m)

Transcript of remarks by PM Turnbull and PM Abe, in Sydney.

TURNBULL: Welcome, Prime Minister, it is wonderful to be hosting you and your party here in Sydney.

We’ve already had a very good constructive discussion this morning as we walked around beautiful South Head. [Read more…]


Labor’s Foreign Policy: Tanya Plibersek Speech To Lowy Institute

The Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, Tanya Plibersek, has addressed the Lowy Institute on the ALP’s approach to foreign policy.

Plibersek’s theme was Australia’s national interest and good international citizenship.

Her speech dealt with Australia’s role in the Asian region, the ANZUS alliance, engagement with international forums, and foreign aid.

  • Listen to Plibersek (55m)
  • Watch Plibersek (56m)

Transcript of ALP Shadow Foreign Minister Tanya Plibersek’s speech to the Lowy Institute. [Read more…]


Abbott Calls For Independent Investigation Of MH17; Foreign Minister Off To UN To Co-Ordinate Campaign

The Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, has dispatched the Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop, to the United Nations to co-ordinate Australia’s demand for a full and fearless investigation into the shooting down of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17.

Abbott

Speaking at a press conference, Abbott and Bishop said a binding United Nations Security Council resolution was needed to ensure that an independent and impartial investigation takes place.

Abbott said a proper investigation “is a matter of the utmost gravity for us and others”. He said 298 innocent people have been killed, “people who had no part in the conflict in Europe but whose lives were snuffed out”. [Read more…]


Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Addresses Australian Parliament

The Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, has addressed the Australian Parliament in Canberra today.

Abe

Abe and Prime Minister Tony Abbott both spoke to a joint sitting of the two houses in the House of Representatives. Abe’s delivered his speech in English, which is being interpreted as a high compliment from the Japanese.

Abbott told the House: “Since 1957, Australian coal, iron ore and gas has powered Japan’s prosperity; and Japanese cars, consumer goods and electronics have transformed Australians’ lives. Australians are grateful for the Japanese trade and Japanese investment that has helped to build our modern prosperity. Above all, we appreciate the mutual respect and trust that has underpinned the commercial relationship. [Read more…]


Abbott Government Cuts $650 Million From Foreign Aid

The Abbott government has announced $650 million of cuts to Australia’s foreign aid program.

BishopThe Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, said the government will cut $61 million from the Pacific region. Only Nauru, which houses around a thousand asylum seekers on behalf of Australia, will be exempt.

Other cuts include $59 million from Indonesia, $71 million from South and West Asia, $113 million from Africa and the Middle East, and $5.3 million from Latin America and the Carribean.

Figures released by Bishop show that Australia spent $3,747 million ($3.7 billion) in aid in 2012-13. The Gillard government’s budget increased this to $4,223.5 million for 2013-14. The Abbott government will reduce this to $3,598 million this financial year, a reduction of $625 million and $149 million less than last year’s actual spending. [Read more…]


Tony Abbott’s Weary Dunlop Speech To AsiaLink

The Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, has given a wide-ranging speech about Australia’s relationship with Asia.

Abbott delivered the Weary Dunlop lecture to AsiaLink in Melbourne.

Abbott

He reiterated his earlier remarks that his approach to foreign policy would have a “Jakarta not Geneva” focus.

In the speech, Abbott discussed Australia’s relationship with Indonesia, India and China. He touched on foreign aid, international students and the study of Asian languages in Australian schools. [Read more…]


‘Enemy Of The State’ – Senator Nick Xenophon Deported From Malaysia

Senator Nick Xenophon has been detained on his arrival in Malaysia and is to be deported.

The independent senator from South Australia has been called an “enemy of the state” for his pro-democracy statements and activities.

Xenophon was part of a cross-party delegation that was scheduled to discuss electoral systems with Malaysia’s main opposition party.

The delegation includes Liberal MP Mal Washer, Nationals Senator John Williams and ALP MP Steve Georganas.

Xenophon was detained at an airport by Malaysian officials.

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