• As Australia’s soft power in the Pacific fades, China’s voice gets louder

    Helen Vatsikopoulos     |      February 25, 2019

    Australia’s soft power is too important to be determined by vengeful payback to the ABC, or by currying favour with commercial television barons. It is about statecraft, as the influence and power of China grows.

  • Imagining Australia’s South Pacific family

    Graeme Dobell     |      February 6, 2019

    What is needed for Australia to step up engagement in the Pacific island region is a sure-footed approach that is based on a firm footing of mutual respect and partnership.

  • A better way to stay connected with the South Pacific

    Geoff Heriot     |      January 31, 2019

    DFAT’s new Office of the Pacific is being established to provide whole-of-government coordination, and is inviting secondments from the nation’s defence and security agencies. Hopefully, it will also reach out more widely to develop a meaningful communication strategy for Pacific engagement.

  • Juggling competing Pacific narratives

    Joanne Wallis     |      January 23, 2019

    Two narratives dominated geopolitical discussions of the Pacific islands in 2018 – that of the Blue Pacific and the Indo-Pacific – but what does the future hold?

  • A turbulent year in Pacific politics

    Tess Newton Cain     |      December 21, 2018

    After decades of neglect, the Pacific region has been ‘rediscovered’ by strategists in Australia, the United States and elsewhere as the military threat and economic reality of China continues to grow.

  • The ICDP year in review

    Tina Briggs     |      December 19, 2018

    The International Centre for Democratic Partnerships runs the Australian Government’s ‘Pacific Connect’ program to build closer relationships with emerging leaders in the Pacific. Its programme coordinator, Tina Briggs, reflects on its first full year of operations.

  • The SMART way to help Pacific Islands lead climate action

    Aisha Reynolds     |      December 17, 2018

    The new SMART tool helps policymakers quickly identify potential co-benefits and trade-offs that need to be considered in planning to mitigate the devastating effects of climate change in the Pacific region.

  • The new era of great-power competition in the Pacific

    Graeme Dobell     |      December 11, 2018

    The first strategic priority for Australia in the Indo-Pacific is to manage great-power competition. And the central trend of that competition is China’s rapidly growing challenge to US dominance.

  • The purposes of the Pacific pivot

    Graeme Dobell     |      December 4, 2018

    A ‘Pacific pivot’ that can marry Australia’s strategic needs with the fundamental needs of Pacific peoples will be a policy which benefits all stakeholders and so ensure enduring results.

  • Businesses can help Australia’s step-up in the Pacific

    Anthony Bergin     |      November 29, 2018

    It’s time to build a more deliberate and far-reaching partnership between government and business to further Australia’s interests in the Pacific.

  • In the post-APEC scramble to lavish funds on PNG, here’s what the country really needs

    Mark Moran     |      November 26, 2018

    If foreign powers really want to make a difference to PNG, one of the poorest nations in the Pacific, then funding telecommunications and solar power kits would be widely welcomed, alongside schemes to use mobile phones to transfer money.

  • Government assistance and e-commerce boost Pacific exports

    Caleb Jarvis     |      November 22, 2018

    New data shows the adoption of digital technology is boosting exports, and as APEC brings leaders to the Pacific, export confidence is high throughout the region.