Joint statement:

  • The Hon Angus Taylor MP, Shadow Treasurer
  • The Hon Andrew Hastie MP, Shadow Minister for Defence


Today’s attempt by the Prime Minister to explain why he’s declined the United States request for a maritime contribution in the Red Sea is woefully inadequate.

Mr Albanese’s statement that the best Australia can do is diplomatic support is both weak and nonsensical. Is Mr Albanese seriously claiming that Australia can exert diplomatic influence over the Houthi rebels?

The Coalition again demands that the Prime Minister answers questions around the capability of the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) and clarify whether Australian Defence Force personnel will be deployed to the Middle East.

It’s troubling that just days after the passage of AUKUS legislation in Congress, Australia has turned down an important request from one of our closest allies.

The inaction of the Albanese Government makes Australia a less reliable partner and ally at a time when our alliances and partnerships are increasingly important.

Failing to contribute to securing this trade route means Australians will pay the price for the Prime Minister’s lack of leadership, with over 12 percent of the worlds’ trade coming through the Suez Canal.

As the Wall Street Journal reported today, sailing around the southern tip of Africa, instead of through the Suez Canal, would extend voyage times to 40 days from 31 days.

This route requires twice the amount of fuel, adding tens of millions in extra costs to the operators, having a flow on effect to cargo owners and inevitably consumers, causing further supply chain shocks.

Australians are already paying the price for Anthony Albanese’s failures on the economy, and now we will pay the price for his failure of leadership on the world stage.

This is just another case of a Prime Minister who makes the wrong calls when it comes to the economy and is weak on national security.

The Coalition demands the Prime Minister immediately explain to Australians the true reasons for his inaction.