Australia is confident its agreement with the US to purchase a fleet of nuclear submarines for delivery in the early 2030s will go ahead no matter who wins the 2024 election, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said.
In an interview broadcast on Sky News on Sunday, Albanese was asked about growing political division in the US following the indictment of former President Donald Trump, who is currently campaigning for another shot at the country’s top job.
The relationship between Australia and the US was between nations, “not just between leaders,” Albanese said, adding he wasn’t concerned about any impact on the Aukus agreement should Trump return to the presidency.
“Australia and the US share common values,” Albanese said. US President Joe Biden is expected to travel to Australia for the first time in May for a meeting of the Quad strategic partnership, alongside Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
Under the Aukus security agreement signed in 2021, the US and the UK will assist Australia in obtaining a fleet of nuclear-powered submarines, with the first US Virginia-class vessels expected to arrive by the early 2030s.
However the deal has been criticized in Australia for tying it more closely to the US. Former Australian Prime Minister Paul Keating described the Aukus agreement as the “worst deal in history” in a speech in March, saying Australia would be tied to the “whim and caprice” of Washington.
Source: MSN – Bloomberg