Australia and Papua New Guinea (PNG) reached another milestone in the bilateral relationship with the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the Joint Initiative at Lombrum Naval Base.
Minister for Defence, Christopher Pyne said the MoU was a significant step forward, following the joint announcement by Prime Ministers Morrison and O’Neill on 1 November 2018.
“The Lombrum Joint Initiative will increase interoperability between our Defence Forces and provide greater opportunities for training and joint activities, as demonstrated by HMAS Choules’ recent visit to Lombrum Naval Base,” Minister Pyne said.
“The Joint Initiative will enhance PNG Defence Force capability to protect its borders and maritime resources through a broad program of mentoring, tailored training, infrastructure development and shared facilities at the PNG Defence Force base.”
“The MoU provides a broad framework to guide PNG and Australia’s cooperation under this Initiative.”
“Increased cooperation at the PNG Defence Force base in Manus Province is a natural extension of our longstanding and collaborative Defence partnership, and demonstrates the Australian Government’s commitment to the Pacific Step Up.”