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  • The Indo-Pacific Defence Conference has kicked off for today only in Perth
  • A total of 500 representatives from the academic, military, government and industry sectors will be at the conference
  • The theme is ‘An era of new and renewed partnerships’
  • Governor of Western Australia, Kim Beazley and Premier Mark McGowan will be speaking

The 2019 Indo-Pacific Defence Conference has kicked off today at Crown Towers in Perth, which will showcase the best of the WA-based defence industry and research capabilities.

The West Australian State Government has partnered with the Perth USAsia Centre to deliver 500 representatives from the academic, military, government and industry sectors from across the Indo-Pacific region.

“Western Australia has a long and proud history of promoting and contributing to the national and international defence industry,” Minister for Defence Paul Papalia commented.

“Perth is home to Australia’s largest naval base, an advanced manufacturing sector and has an internationally recognised reputation for innovation and expertise. It’s strategic economic and locational links in the Indo-Pacific make it the ideal location to discuss the critical defence and security issues impacting the region.”

This event is following the highly successful first conference that was held last year.

Just today Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced a $500 million funding boost to special forces in Australia.

The spending is expected to be delivered over a four year period and will provide a portion of the $3 billion total to the elite forces, over a period of 20 years.

“Australian Special Forces undertake complex, highly demanding operations in high threat environments,” Prime Minister Morrison stated before making the announcement.

“Global threats will continue to evolve. This funding will ensure our Special Forces have cutting edge capabilities to stay ahead of those who might threaten Australia’s interests.”

The funding will be primarily used for equipment such as diving and parachuting equipment, weapons, body armour, and roping and climbing systems.

The theme of this year’s conference is ‘An era of new and renewed partnerships’ with a primary focus on including a new role for Indonesia in the region. Other focuses include a growing role for Japan, an ambitious role for India, renewed roles for the United Kingdom and France, and a continued role for the U.S.

Keynote speakers will explore the themes around industry support for the changing operational environment, new frontiers in defence technology, WA’s STEM agenda and defence industry applications for WA’s battery minerals and resource expertise.

Key speakers include; Professor of Korea National Defence University, Major General Seo Young; former US Ambassador to South Korea and now Vice President at Boeing International, Mark Lippert; and former Vice Chairman of the People’s Consultative Assembly of the Republic of Indonesia, Lieutenant General Agus Widjojo.

Kim Beazley, the Governor of Western Australia and Premier Mark McGowan will also address the crowds. Both the Ministers and Shadow Ministers for Defence and the Defence Industry will also be speaking.

Key companies that will be there include; Aquabotix, Orbital UAV, Austal and Blacktree Technology.

This conference runs all day, however, is for today only.

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