“The balance of power in the Indo-Pacific is shifting away from the US and its allies”

10:10 06.04.2023 •

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, US President Joe Biden and UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in California.
Photo: Bloomberg

The balance of power in the region is shifting away from the US and its allies, Australia’s spy chief told the conference, Reuters informs.

The US’ technological edge is eroding, an Australian intelligence chief said as a Sydney conference was told the AUKUS alliance of Australia, Britain and the United States must collaborate on quantum and hypersonic technology to compete with China.

Andrew Shearer, the director general of Australia’s Office of National Intelligence, said the balance of power in the Indo-Pacific region was starting to “shift away from the United States and its allies, undermining deterrence”. “We are seeing our long-standing technological edge start to erode, and in some cases that edge is totally gone,” he added.

Schmidt, who has advised the US Department of Defence on artificial intelligence, said China is organised around drones, hypersonic and automation technology, and this should influence Australia’s military spending decisions.

Although it was likely there would be decoupling between China and Western allies in critical technology, China was not an enemy and they could work together in other areas, he added.

“We are going to have a great deal of non-strategic partnering with China, and Australia will in particular, there will be lots of trade in things that are relatively commodity… but there’s not going to be agreement on common standards on chips,” he said.

He criticised the US government for restricting Chinese researchers from moving to the United States to work on technologies like quantum computing.


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