Canberra: Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne and British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss have agreed to closer cooperation to offer clean, reliable and transparent finance for investment in infrastructure that meets the needs and priorities ofAsut Indo-Pacific partners.
The new agreement will deepen Australia's and the UK's cooperation on infrastructure investment across the Indo-Pacific, setting the scope for joint and complementary financing and technical assistance for high-standard development projects such as disaster resilient and climate adapted infrastructure.
Truss and Payne signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Thursday during Truss's visit to Australia.
"Australia's vision for the Indo-Pacific is of an open, inclusive and resilient community of sovereign nations, Payne said in a press release on Thursday.
"We have progressively transformed our investment approach in line with the evolving infrastructure needs and priorities across the Indo-Pacific, with a strong focus on climate adapted and resilient projects. We look forward to deepening our engagement with the UK to deliver practical infrastructure solutions that drive economic growth, enhance connectivity and achieve development goals in the Indo-Pacific region," she stated.
A new 'Strategic Infrastructure and Development Dialogue' has been agreed between the UK's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).
The UK is stepping up its work on infrastructure investment and aims to mobilise up to £8bn of UK-backed financing a year by 2025.
This includes the relaunch of the UK Development Finance Institution British International Investment, which is expanding in the Indo-Pacific, through injecting new capital and has a new investment strategy to finance projects across sectors, from ports to renewable energy and digital.
Building on existing collaboration with Australia, the UK will also continue investment into the Private Infrastructure Development Group, to further develop a pipeline of investable projects in the region.
"The UK and Australia are natural partners, and we are determined to play a positive and proactive role by financing and delivering clean infrastructure that is reliable and honest," Truss said.
"The UK is committed to building a ‘network of liberty' and that means championing democracy by supporting countries in the Indo-Pacific to resolve their development needs," she stated.
The UK-Australia MOU will be complemented by dialogue between the UK's British International Investment (BII) and Australia's Infrastructure Financing Facility for the Pacific (AIFFP) and Partnerships for Infrastructure (P4I) to explore joint opportunities on infrastructure in the Indo-Pacific working closely with regional partners.