The text of the following statement was released by the Governments of the United States of America, the Government of Australia, and the Government of New Zealand on the occasion of the inaugural Australia � New Zealand � United States Pacific Security Cooperation Dialogue.
On June 6 and 7, Deputy Assistant Secretary Matt Matthews with Australian First Assistant Secretary Daniel Sloper and New Zealand Assistant Secretary Andrew Needs led the inaugural Australia � New Zealand � United States Pacific Security Cooperation Dialogue at the Department of State in Washington, DC.
The Pacific Security Cooperation Dialogue is a trilateral forum that brings together civilian and military representatives from the three governments to discuss a wide range of security issues and identify areas to strengthen cooperation with Pacific Island countries on common regional challenges. The Dialogue complements bilateral discussions each participating country has with Pacific Island countries. Delegations included officials from the three governments responsible for foreign affairs, defense, law enforcement, coast guard, homeland security, development and trade.
Dialogue participants reaffirmed a common interest in the prosperity, stability and security of the Indo-Pacific region, and their shared Pacific neighborhood. All three countries emphasized the importance of strengthened cooperation with Pacific Island countries, including in the context of Pacific Islands Forum initiatives to enhance regional peace, stability and prosperity.
The Dialogue identified opportunities for enhanced collaboration among trilateral partners, Pacific Island countries and regional organizations on a range of targeted areas, including: strengthening port security in support of open trade and commerce; increasing maritime domain awareness in the Pacific through enhanced information sharing; supporting the Australia Pacific Security College and associated opportunities for building institutional capacity and cooperative links; combatting transnational organized crime; and military-to-military cooperation. The next round of the Pacific Security Cooperation Dialogue is expected to be held in Canberra, Australia in May 2019.
Source: U.S. State Department.