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Sam Bateman


Assessing the South China Sea award

The Philippines had a major, if unenforceable, win against China in the 12 July South China Sea Arbitration under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. But the implications go beyond the bilateral dispute between China and the Philippines and it carries...

Chinese investment in the Port of Darwin: a strategic risk for Australia?

The Port of Darwin lease highlights an urgent need to review how Australia takes account of its national security interests in making decisions about foreign investment.

Terms of engagement: Australia’s regional defence diplomacy

Australia is in the process of pivoting back to our own region and looking for new strategies for Defence re-engagement. But the Defence Cooperation Program hasn’t been scrutinised in any depth since an audit report by the Auditor-General in 2001. That pointed to a lack...

Making waves: Australian ocean development assistance

This paper argues for ocean development to be a key strategic goal of Australia's increased aid investments. In particular, it recommends that AusAID fund key features of the follow-on to Australia's successful Defence funded Pacific Patrol Boat program. Australia has a vital national interest in...

Staying the course: Australia and maritime security in the South Pacific

This report argues Australia should develop a comprehensive approach to replace the Pacific Patrol Boat Program. Australia has supplied twenty-two boats to twelve island countries for maritime security. The vessels will start reaching the end of their service lives from 2018. But Australia’s future plans...