Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, alongside his Vanuatu counterpart Charlot Salwai Tabimasmas, recently reinforced the two nations’ commitment to the economic and security partnership between both nations.
As part of this commitment, Australia and Vanuatu have agreed to commence negotiations on a bilateral security treaty based on common security interests, with a focus on humanitarian assistance and disaster response, maritime surveillance and border security, police and defence co-operation.
Australia will provide technical assistance to support Vanuatu develop its first National Security Strategy. This strategy aims to support Vanuatu's vision for a "stable, sustainable and prosperous Vanuatu".
Additionally, Australia will provide training assistance to recruit and train 200 new police officers by 2020, with $400,000 in support to strengthen the capacity of Vanuatu's Computer Emergency Response Team and to help develop Vanuatu's cyber policy and legislation.
This commitment renews Vanuatu's position as one of Australia's key economic and security partners in the Pacific and serves as the basis for renewed Australian engagement in the region.