SYDNEY — Australia stated on Monday it could speed up plans to purchase superior sea mines to defend its maritime routes and ports from “potential aggressors” amid China’s plans to enhance its affect within the Pacific area.
The so-called sensible sea mines are designed to differentiate between navy targets and different sorts of ships, a defense division spokesperson stated in an announcement.
“(Australia) is accelerating the acquisition of smart sea mines, which will help to secure sea lines of communication and protect Australia’s maritime approaches,” it stated. “A modern sea mining capability is a significant deterrent to potential aggressors.”
Although the defense division didn’t specify any additional particulars, a report within the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper on Monday stated Canberra would spend up to A$1 billion ($698 million) to procure the high-tech underwater weapons.
The federal authorities will quickly announce a contract to purchase “a substantial number” of sea mines from a European weapons provider, the report stated, citing unidentified defense business sources.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese advised ABC tv he wouldn’t “pre-empt those national security issues.”
“What we need is to make sure we have the best possible defenses. So we have looked at missile defense, we’re looking at cyber security, we’re looking at all of these issues,” Mr. Albanese stated.
China has plans to step up its presence within the Pacific and entered a safety pact with Solomon Islands final yr, elevating issues in america and Australia, who for many years have seen the area as their sphere of affect.
Australia has been trying to enhance its defense spending over the previous few years, together with getting into right into a deal in 2021 to purchase nuclear submarines from america and Britain. — Reuters