New Zealand will host next year’s South Pacific Defence Ministers’ Meeting (SPDMM), Defence Minister, Judith Collins has announced.
“Having just returned from this year’s meeting in Nouméa, I witnessed first-hand the value of meeting with my Pacific counterparts to discuss regional security and defence matters. I welcome the opportunity to host next year’s meeting to continue to progress our joint agenda,” said Ms Collins.
This year’s meeting took place in New Caledonia and covered a range of issues relevant to the region, including maritime security, climate change, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, and regional security architecture.
“As outlined in the joint communique from the meeting, together we continued to identify ways we can work together more effectively to address regional challenges,” said the Minister.
In addition to attending the official proceedings, Minister Collins held meetings with counterparts from host country France, Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Tonga, Chile and Australia.
Dates for the ninth annual South Pacific Defence Ministers’ meeting (SPDMM) in 2024 are still to be confirmed.
SPDMM involves Defence Ministers from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, France, Tonga, Chile, Australia and New Zealand. The United Kingdom, United States and Japan took part as observers in 2023.