Assistant Minister for Defence Michael McCormack yesterday held constructive talks with the Finnish Minister of Defence and senior Finnish defence industry representatives in Canberra.
The Finland‐Australia Defence and Security Seminar brings together the Captains of Defence Industry in both countries to discuss areas of mutual interest.
Mr McCormack said the Finnish delegation discussed some of their future programs and development plans as well as their procurement policies.
“The Finnish Minister for Defence Dr Jussi Niinisto indicated Finland has started procurement to replace some of its existing platforms including fighter jets,” Mr McCormack said.
“The Finnish delegation has a strong interest in our military procurement processes and is keen to learn from our vast experience in this space.
“We also discussed the Defence White Paper which establishes our funding commitment in real terms over the next decade, providing long‐term stability and certainty for our Defence capability.”
Finland, like Australia, is one of the five Enhanced Opportunities Partners with NATO and Finland has contributed to NATO operations in Afghanistan both through the International Security Assistance Force and its successor the Resolute Support Mission.
“Australia welcomes Finland’s participation in the US‐led training mission in Iraqi Kurdistan to support international coalition operations to counter Daesh and other like‐minded groups.”
In closing, Mr McCormack reinforced the collect resolve of both countries to work together will ensure Australia and Finland are best placed to meet current and future security challenges.
“Our discussions were constructive for both countries and there will be considerable opportunities born from discussions to enhance and strengthen our bilateral relationship, including on industry matters such as Defence engagement and materiel co‐operation.”
Ruby Cameron (Minister McCormack’s office) (02) 0455 091 557