Today I travel to Indonesia to represent Australia at the annual Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Ministerial Meeting after chairing the association for the past two years.

Australia is committed to working with Indonesia as the incoming Chair to take forward the IORA agenda.

In our role, Australia has worked with our regional partners to deliver practical initiatives which enhance stability and prosperity in Indian Ocean rim countries.

We established the ‘blue economy’ as the foremost focus for regional cooperation in the Indian Ocean Region hosting workshops and funding collaborative activities in aquaculture, fisheries, ocean forecasting and climate adaption. 

Australia introduced women’s economic empowerment as an IORA priority, working through the International Trade Centre in Geneva to help women who own small businesses to build their export competitiveness.

We sponsored the IORA search and rescue agreement, in the wake of the MH370 disaster, and convened forums facilitating greater engagement by the business community in IORA.  

Tomorrow’s Ministerial Meeting is an important opportunity to progress these initiatives and promote Australia’s growing strategic and economic engagement in the Indian Ocean region.

Ministers will discuss a range of challenges facing the region including maritime safety, trade facilitation and fisheries management.

I will also have separate discussions with Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi and other counterparts on key priorities in our respective bilateral relationships.

Media enquiries

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