FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ottawa, ON – On Tuesday, December 8, Conservative Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs Michael Chong held a phone call with H.E. Natasha Smith, the Australian High Commissioner to Canada about Canada-Australia relations.
MP Chong highlighted several items with the High Commissioner, including:
- Canada’s close and friendly ties with Australia, with both being members of the “Five Eyes” intelligence alliance. MP Chong noted that both Canada and Australia are liberal democracies that share common values and many interests, and both have similarly sized populations and economies.
- Conservatives’ belief that Canada should work more closely with Australia to strengthen our shared values and to provide a counter to increasingly authoritarian regimes, including Conservatives desire to join the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue with Australia, India, Japan and the United States.
- Conservatives’ belief in standing in solidarity with Australia in light of China’s threats against Australia.
- Conservatives’ belief in expanding trade and investment with Australia. He pointed to the opportunities under the new Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) for Canada to expand trade and investment with Australia.
H.E. Natasha Smith and MP Chong discussed Conservatives’ support for closer ties through a potential Canada-Australia-New Zealand-United Kingdom (“CANZUK”) agreement, Australia’s policies and partners in the Indo-Pacific, the new CPTPP, China and the incoming Biden administration. They agreed to continue a dialogue on expanding Canada-Australia relations.