The Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, will travel to Germany and France from 22-26 April to meet with Defence counterparts and attend Anzac Day commemorative ceremonies.
Minister Payne will meet with German counterpart, Minister for Defence Dr Ursula von der Leyen, to discuss global security issues and defence materiel cooperation.
“Australia and Germany have a deepening defence relationship and we are both longstanding contributors to the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan,” Minister Payne said.
“In the past six months the Australian Government has announced that German firms Lürssen and Rheinmetall will respectively deliver Australia’s new Offshore Patrol Vessels and Combat Reconnaissance Vehicles, further cementing our long-term defence co-operation,” Minister Payne said.
In France Minister Payne will meet with her counterpart, Minister for the Armed Forces Florence Parly, to discuss the going counter-Daesh coalition missions in Iraq and Syria and efforts to counter violent extremism.
Minister Payne will visit the Naval Group facilities at Cherbourg where the design of Australia’s Future Submarine is underway.
“The Australia-France defence relationship began on the battlefields of the Western Front during the First World War and continues today in the Pacific, and in Syria and Iraq, and through the development of Australia’s future submarine,” Minister Payne said.
“The Future Submarine Program is the largest Defence capability project Australia has ever embarked upon and is it driving a revitalisation in Australian-French strategic cooperation, which will underpin our bilateral relationship for decades to come,” Minister Payne said.
Minister Payne will join Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull as he opens the Sir John Monash Centre at Villers-Bretonneux, and will attend Anzac Day ceremonies at Villers-Bretonneux and Bullecourt.
On 26 April, Minister Payne will attend the Ministerial Conference on the Fight Against Financing Daesh and Al-Qaeda.
“Australia is committed to working with our international partners and private organisations to disrupt and stop the funding of terrorist networks,” Minister Payne said.