Australia to revamp defences as China tensions rise

Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison. PHOTO | FILE | AFP

What you need to know:

  • Australia's government has committed to spending at least two percent of GDP on defence -- as US President Donald Trump has angrily demanded of allies -- and plans to spend almost 40 percent more on weapons systems over the last defence review in 2016.
  • The country will acquire a more powerful strike capability that can hit targets thousands of kilometres from Australia.
  • It will also invest in newer platforms like drones, and boost research into hypersonic and direct energy weapons like lasers.

Australia announced an assertive new defence strategy Wednesday, beefing up its long-range strike capabilities and cyber-warfare efforts amid escalating tensions with China.

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