Joint statement, remarks with Deputy Prime Minister of Poland

Release details

Release type

Related ministers and contacts

The Hon Richard Marles MP

Deputy Prime Minister

Minister for Defence

Media contact

02 6277 7800

Władysław Kosiniak-Kamysz

Deputy Prime Minister

Minister of National Defense

Release content

26 April 2024

SUBJECTS: Australia-Poland relationship.

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER AND MINISTER FOR DEFENCE OF POLAND, WLADYSLAW KOSINIAK-KAMYSZ: Thank you very much, dear colleague, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of Australia, I would like to express our gratitude for the visit. Australia is a tried and tested friend of Poland, it is a great economic partner but also a partner in defence and military. Australia cooperates very closely and works together with NATO – with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation – it is our partner and out friend. We work together, we share common history. When speaking to Deputy Prime Minister Marles, I mentioned the large diaspora of Polish people- people of Polish origin living in Australia. We shared and exchanged information about Polish diaspora dispersed around the world and I spoke to Mr Deputy Prime Minister saying that it was very important during this solidarity movement to have the possibility for Polish (inaudible) to be able to go not just to the UK, to France, to America and Canada but also to Australia – this is the history that we share. We work together in many different places, and many different fields, on many different continents. We have economic and military ties. When it comes to military cooperation, we plan to negotiate and hopefully sign an agreement in the field of defence between Poland and Australia. We intend to support each other and to monitor the situation in Europe with particular attention to the situation in Ukraine. We intend to continue to support Ukraine. I would like to express my deep gratitude to the Deputy Prime Minister, but to the whole of Australia for their support of Ukraine for this enormous economic and financial effort to support Ukraine in terms of humanitarian aid but also in terms of military support. Australian soldiers have been present in Poland supporting us in protecting the deliveries for Ukraine. We appreciate this very much and as the country that neighbours Ukraine we really, really value your support. 

We are aware of the geopolitical situation in the Pacific, we appreciate the role Australia plays in the global security together with the United States. And considering this, we appreciate your involvement in Europe even more and I would like to thank you for supplying your planes, the E-7A planes in protecting the airspace in Poland. The Australian mission has concluded and we hope it will take place in the future as well – this is something we spoke about with Deputy Prime Minister Marles. We want to work together in order to improve our economic ties with particular attention given to the defence and military industry. We intend to take part in different events and we will prepare offers for our respective defence industries, and exchange of experience is also an important aspect of our cooperation, our soldiers, our military are able to share their experience of the equipment that both our countries have. For example, the F35s – Australia has considerable experience and Polish officers will certainly benefit from the experience of Australian colleagues. 

So, thank you very much [Deputy] Prime Minister for your presence here in Warsaw and thank you for your support and cooperation. Thank you very much and now the floor is yours, Deputy Prime Minister. 

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER, RICHARD MARLES: Well thank you, Deputy Prime Minister. I want to begin by being very grateful for the way in which you have hosted me and my delegation here today. There is something very personal about the relationship between Australia and Poland. There is a very significant Polish diaspora in Australia, a very large Polish community. Even in my hometown White Eagle House, which is the home of the Polish community, is a very vibrant community centre, which I have visited on many occasions. So as we talk about ways in which we can engage together more strategically in the future, this conversation is happening on a very strong foundation of trust, a very strong foundation of personal links. 

I want to commend you Deputy Prime Minister for Poland’s leadership in the way in which you have worked in organising Europe, but certainly in supporting Ukraine in defending against Russia’s appalling invasion of its country. What we saw happen over two years ago with the Russian invasion of Ukraine simply cannot be allowed to stand. The idea of a large country seeking to impose itself on a smaller neighbour – not by reference to international law, but simply by reference to power and might – simply cannot be allowed to stand at this moment in time. It is an affront to the global rules‑based order. What we understand is that Australia’s national interest is deeply engaged in the maintenance of the global rules-based order around the world. In the Indo-Pacific of course, but also here in Eastern Europe. That is why we are so concerned by what’s happened in Ukraine, why we are so determined to play our part in supporting Ukraine so that they are able to resolve this conflict on their terms. When we look to the way in which Poland has provided leadership, we are very inspired by that and deeply grateful for it. And we look at Poland as a country with who we have strategic alignment now, but with whom we share values. Both democracies with a deep history and connection to democracy. And in a world which has become increasingly smaller and more interdependent, where events in eastern Europe are having an impact on the way countries see events playing out in the Indo-Pacific, and visa versa, it means that, as we focus on our region, on the Indo-Pacific, of course, we can only do that by having an eye to what’s occurring everywhere in the world and particularly what’s occurring here in eastern Europe. So we are very committed to supporting Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, but we have also become much more illuminated about what is occurring in Europe and in that sense the relationship with Poland is put into sharp relief and we see that there is an enormous opportunity for our two countries to work together. We look forward to working with you to look at ways in which we can reach agreements in respect defence cooperation, as you said, in relation to defence industry. We now find ourselves using common F35s, as an example. We look at the growing Polish defence industry and see the opportunities in relation to that. 

So we very much look forward to looking at ways in which we can cooperate more at a defence-to-defence level, but also ways in which we can share our experiences on different sides of the world, but as two countries with shared values and share a common commitment to the maintenance of the global rules-based order. Deputy Prime Minister, thank you very much again for having me here. It is an honour to be able to meet with you today and we very much look forward to taking our relationship to the next level in the future. 


Other related releases