This paper explores four hard questions about the upcoming Australia in the Asian Century White Paper being finalised by former Treasury Secretary Dr Ken Henry and his team.

The paper asks:

  • Will the White Paper focus on the right region in the right way?
  • How will it address strategic risks?
  • How will it treat defence and security?
  • What place will it accord to other parts of the world?

In asking these questions, this Policy Analysis points out the puzzling absence of the United States from the White Paper's terms of reference, despite the centrality of the US to the strategic picture. It highlights the fact that there are very evident risks to stability in the Asian Century, and looks at what that means for defence engagement with the region.


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