Time for Australia to make new friends in Europe.
Given Australia’s strong and enduring ties with both the UK and the EU, the shockwaves from Brexit will be felt in Australia soon enough.
Australia’s 2016 aid budget contains a further $224 million cut.
On every measure of generosity there is, Australia’s foreign aid ranking is falling behind that of other advanced countries.
The adjustment in Australia’s defence spending to 1.9% to 2% of GDP is reasonable.
The stakes around Australia’s defence appear higher and the urgency greater than at any time since the height of the Cold War.
Timor-Leste is one of the world’s most oil-dependent countries.
In terms of what is achievable, any foreign policy approach that does not account for strategic and historical realities is likely to fail.
For anyone who has been following Malcolm Turnbull’s progress as prime minister, his much-anticipated speech to the Lowy Institute contained few real surprises, other that the fact that it was inevitably…
A Trump presidency may be the right time for Australia to distance itself from the US.
It is impossible to know for sure what a Trump presidency would be like. But there are sensible reasons to suspect it could be disastrous – not only for the US but also for Australia.
Defence diplomacy will not substantially transform the overall picture of Asia’s ongoing political cleavages.
The coming defence white paper presents an opening for the Turnbull government to place its stamp on national security priorities and to align planning and policy settings with its strategic vision.
Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull’s predecessor as prime minister, enjoyed a close relationship with his Japanese counterpart, Shinzo Abe.
Australia looks set to continue to confront its core foreign policy dilemma: balancing relations between its largest trading partner, China, and its key security partners, the US and Japan.
What Tony Abbott himself claims as his government’s achievements are all reversals of previous policies.
So far, Tony Abbott has failed to position himself as anything more than an opposition leader who has been given power and is unsure what to do with it.
Australia’s traditional reliance on multilateralism and alliances won’t be enough to negotiate the geopolitical rivalries of the Asian century.
For the past two centuries, Australia got many of the big calls on global engagement right. In our third century, there are worrying signs that we have not fully grasped what the rise of Asia means.
What J.K. Galbraith famously called the conventional wisdom is a powerful thing to behold. There are few better local examples than the belief that the military alliance with the US is vital for the security…
With the possible exception of North Korea, there aren’t too many countries that don’t like to think of themselves as “good international citizens”. For states such as Australia, it’s ostensibly one of…
One of four koalas on loan to Singapore Zoo, where they were unveiled to the public on Wednesday May 20.
Four female koalas have just made their debut in front of an adoring public at Singapore Zoo – the latest in a long line of animals used for diplomatic purposes, going back to Winston the platypus.
Australian aid can make a difference to the lives of millions – but there are few votes and little media interest in it, so it’s an easy target for budget cuts.
John Bransby/Department of Foreign Affairs
Foreign aid will fall to close to 90 cents in every A$100 of federal government spending in the 2015 budget – its lowest level ever.
Iranians, who celebrated in the streets of Tehran following this month’s nuclear agreement, are keen to rebuild relations with the West.
By reaching out to Iran, Australia can help end a long stand-off with the West that prevented solutions to many of the world’s most dangerous problems, including Syria’s civil war and Islamic State.
Australian has moved swiftly to fly relief aid and personnel to Vanuatu but has been less responsive to Pacific Islanders’ pleas to act on climate change.
While Australia’s leaders express concern for the people of Vanuatu, the welfare of poor states is a commitment from which Australia is walking away.
If Tony Abbott loses office in the near future, his Japanese counterpart Shinzo Abe will suffer a not-inconsiderable setback.
As Prime Minister Tony Abbott dusts himself down after what might be the first of a number of challenges to his leadership, interest in Japan about Australian politics is acute. Japanese political elites…
Protests in Australia over the potential execution of Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan will gain little traction in Indonesia.
It now seems almost inevitable that two Australians, drug smugglers Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, will soon be executed in Indonesia. If this does happen, there will be public protests in Australia…
Bob Hawke on a 1984 visit to China. His government implemented policies which boosted Asian engagement.
The Hawke government in the 1980s is widely considered to be the most competent and effective of recent years. Some may say this is not setting the bar terribly high, but the cabinet papers of 1988-89…
Bill Shorten needs to define a positive story for Labor that goes beyond the constant whining about the government’s broken promises.
Bill Shorten, who seemed so impressive as a union leader and minister, is shaping up as the least inspiring opposition leader since Alexander Downer. In foreign affairs, Shorten’s fear of repeating Mark…