THE AUSTRALIAN and Papua New Guinea Defence Forces will pursue reciprocal logistics support under a Mutual Logistics Support Arrangement signed in April.

Australian Defence Force (ADF) Commander Joint Logistics, Rear Admiral Clint Thomas and his PNG Defence Force (PNGDF) counterpart, Chief of Logistics Colonel Ben Siria, are currently negotiating how the agreement can be put in place.

They discussed existing cooperation between the two militaries, with logistics experts already conducting exchanges between Port Moresby and Townsville, along with infrastructure, supply, maintenance and equipment support provided through the Defence Cooperation Program.

They also discussed how the PNG-Australia Defence Cooperation Program can be further tailored to support the PNGDF’s logistics capabilities.

“I look forward to the arrangement being an important means of building the PNGDF’s logistics capability, which will support the PNGDF’s development as a more capable, sustainable and professional regional security partner,” Rear Admiral Thomas said.

“The Defence Cooperation Program with PNG is our largest with any country, with
approximately K53 million allocated in the 2014-2015 financial year and this is set to increase in 2015-2016.”