French President Emmanuel Macron has called for the creation of a new strategic alliance among France, India and Australia to respond to challenges in the Asia-Pacific region and the growing assertiveness of China.
On the second day of a visit to Australia, where he hopes to cement defence ties following the 2016 signing of a 38 billion dollar megadeal to supply submarines to the Australian Navy, Macron said the like-minded democracies should forge closer ties. Macron in a speech at an Australian naval base said if we want to be seen and respected by China as an equal partner, we must organise ourselves.
Macron visited China in January, where he warned Beijing that its new “Silk Road” initiative should not be “one-way”. He then arrived in India in March, where he committed to strengthening a defence partnership that has already seen New Delhi buy French warplanes in 2016.
President Macron said this new Paris-Delhi-Canberra axis is absolutely key for the region and our joint objectives in the Indian-Pacific region.