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Joint Minister for Defence - Delivering a Vanuatu national government emergency radio network togethe



SENATOR THE HON LINDA REYNOLDS CSC
Minister for Defence
Senator for Western Australia
Australia


THE HONOURABLE ALATOI ISHMAEL KALSAKAU
Deputy Prime Minister
Minister of Internal Affairs
Republic of Vanuatu


JOINT MEDIA RELEASE

DELIVERING A VANUATU NATIONAL GOVERNMENT EMERGENCY RADIO NETWORK TOGETHER


6 October 2020
 

The Governments of the Republic of Vanuatu and Australia are partnering to repair and upgrade the national government emergency radio network across Vanuatu.

The inter-island communication project, which will be delivered over three years under the Vanuatu-Australia Defence Cooperation Program, will significantly increase Vanuatu’s disaster preparedness and response capability.

It will also support an enhanced Vanuatu Police Force presence across the archipelago.

Australian Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC said Tropical Cyclone Harold, as well as the challenges of COVID-19, have reinforced the need for communications to support policing and disaster resilience.

“Australia is proud to partner with the Vanuatu Police Force to design and deliver an enduring solution that meets Vanuatu’s needs,” Minister Reynolds said.

“The project provides an invaluable avenue for enhanced collaboration, training and interoperability between our nations – including during humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations.”

The project will establish a unified emergency call and dispatch system to connect police outposts to support local communities.

Delivery of the communications infrastructure and training will be prioritised in Port Vila, Luganville, Aneityum, Sola, Loh, Ambae and Epi.

This will be expanded over the next three years to support 15 police outposts in total, including mobile two-way radio in five locations.

Vanuatu’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs, the Honourable Alatoi Ishmael Kalsakau, said the project will deliver a far-reaching communications capability to support policing, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief, and search and rescue functions.

“The project supports Vanuatu’s National Security Strategy and decentralisation efforts, connecting communities, and delivering security services to rural areas,” Minister Kalsakau said.

“It also supports our border security efforts, particularly important in the current COVID-19 environment.

“We know that good communication in the minutes and hours following a disaster is critical to an effective and speedy response.

“This is yet another example of how Vanuatu and Australia can work together as security partners to deliver practical benefits for both nations.”

Vanuatu and Australia continue to work closely together to deepen our strong and long-standing security partnership, including through our Defence Cooperation Program, to promote our shared interests and people-to-people connections.


Media Contacts
Ben Martin (Minister Reynolds’ Office): +61 447 219 902
Nicky Hamer (Minister Reynolds’ Office): +61 437 989 927
Defence Media: media@defence.gov.au
Sergeant Jane Pakoa (Vanuatu Police Force Media), vpfmedia@vanuatu.gov.au; +678 26570


Authorised by Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC, Minister for Defence, Australia and the Honourable Alatoi Ishmael Kalsakau, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Internal Affairs, Republic of Vanuatu
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