Australia, Philippines sign deals in defense, maritime, cyber security fields

Australia, Philippines sign deals in defense, maritime, cyber security fields

Philippines president arrived on his 1st 2-day official visit to Canberra on Wednesday

By Anadolu staff

Australia and the Philippines on Thursday signed several memoranda of understanding (MOUs) on the defense, maritime, and cyber security fields.

The ceremony was attended by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and visiting Philippines President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

A statement issued by the premier's office said both countries signed the MOUs to enhance maritime cooperation, strengthening their existing civil and defense maritime commitments.

Canberra and Manila also signed an MOU on the cyber and critical technology field to harden their resilience against cyberattacks and encourage cooperation in the digital economy.

The two countries also signed a deal for cooperation in national competition commissions to enhance effective competition law and policy.

"We'll collaborate even more closely to promote our shared vision for the region, including in civil maritime security, marine environment protection, maritime domain awareness, and promoting respect for international law," Albanese told reporters.

He added that they will continue cooperation to sustain peace and stability in their region.

Albanese also announced a new $20 million investment to support the Philippines to reform and improve access to its justice system.

Marcos arrived in Australia on Wednesday on his first two-day official visit, and addressed the joint sitting of the parliament.

Last year, Albanese also visited Manila, the first visit by an Australian prime minister in 20 years.

On his part, President Marcos said their conversations centered on ways to maximize the enhanced status of bilateral relations, including defense, maritime cooperation, non-traditional security concerns, trade and investment, development cooperation, multilateral collaboration, and people-to-people links.

"Defense and security remain a key area of cooperation between the Philippines and Australia. We look forward to amplifying our joint activities and the capacity-building efforts in this regard," he said.

Australia is expected to host Southeast Asian leaders at the ASEAN-Australia Special Summit next week in Melbourne.

*Writing by Islamuddin Sajid

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