Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

September 16, 2011 09:00 ET

Minister MacKay Concludes Defence Discussions in New Zealand

WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND--(Marketwire - Sept. 16, 2011) - Today, the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, concluded his three-day visit to New Zealand where he held multiple bilateral meetings on Asia-Pacific defence issues and defence transformation.

"Canada and New Zealand are like-minded nations that regularly cooperate in international operations and exercises," said Minister MacKay. "Regularized contact between Canada and New Zealand increases our ability to effect meaningful defence reform and ultimately better the security of our countries."

During his time in New Zealand, Minister MacKay met his New Zealand counterpart, Minister of Defence, Dr. Wayne Mapp, Secretary of Defence, Mr. John McKinnon, and Minister of Foreign Affairs, The Honourable Murray McCully. They discussed, among other topics, the state of current defence operations, defence reform and procurement.

On September 15, Minister MacKay attended and laid a wreath at the 71st Commemoration of the Battle of Britain at the New Zealand National War Memorial along with New Zealand's Veterans' Affairs Minister, Ms. Judith Collins.

This Asia-Pacific visit provided an opportunity to deepen Canada-Australia and Canada- New Zealand bilateral ties, to discuss military operations and defence transformation, and to exchange views on regional and international matters of operational and strategic importance.

Canada has excellent defence relations with both Australia and New Zealand, which are considered to be among our closest allies in the Asia-Pacific region.

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