Trade and national security are intertwined

Address given by Mr Robert McKinnon, Assistant Secretary, Strategic Issues and Intelligence Branch,  Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to the 2019 ANI Goldrick Seminar.

HMAS Benalla transits down the North Queensland coast while being passed by a large merchant ship during the Minor War Vessel Concentration Period.

At the turn of the 20th Century, protectionist trade policies shaped the global economy.[1] However, in the wake of two world Wars, the nexus between the free flow of global trade through multilateral agreement and the prospects for peace was recognised by world leaders.[2] Australia’s leadership, participation and influence in the multilateral economic and security architecture that emerged from this realisation underpins our prosperity. 

And as Prime Minister Morrison recently highlighted: “everything else stems from the strength of our economy.”[3]

Australia’s trade performance contributes very strongly to our economic prosperity. Trade and national security are thus intertwined. This is a whole of government endeavour, involving many different agencies and many in this room. 

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