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What geopolitical consequences of the breach of the Australian submarine contract?  – France

  • 1 the maintenance of France in the Indo-Pacific
  • Before the National Defense and Foreign Affairs committees of the National Assembly, Florence Parly reassured the deputies on the sustainability of French power in the area of ​​the Pacific Ocean and the Indian Ocean. “The cancellation of this contract does not invalidate our strategy,” said the Minister. Some suggest that France has lost its way in the Indo-Pacific, that there would be misplaced ambitions. I do not share this minimalist vision. ”

    After the failure of the Australian partnership, Paris is counting on strengthening its links with other countries in the region: India, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.

  • 2 Three conditions imposed in the United States
  • Following the exchange, on September 22, between Joe Biden and Emmanuel Macron, several conditions were set by Paris to “restore confidence” between the two allies. “It is first of all, for the United States, to assert a stronger European defense and in complementarity with NATO, advanced Florence Parly. It is also about reaffirming the importance of the engagement of France and the EU in the Indo-Pacific region. And also the support that the United States provides us in anti-terrorist operations, in the Sahel in particular. “

    Paris wants Washington to support its options for NATO’s next strategic concept (a document that defines the Alliance’s missions and objectives) and the EU’s “strategic compass”. The two texts will be discussed in the first half of 2022.

  • 3 Putting the defense treaty with London on hold
  • The Lancaster House Treaty, sealed with the United Kingdom, in 2010, “was already suffering the consequences of the situation created by Brexit,” said the Minister for the Armed Forces. It is an asset that must be preserved (…) but the common ambition it carried must be re-examined, in particular concerning the missile project for our Navy ”. Paris and London launched an anti-ship and cruise missile program in 2017.

  • 4 The risk of nuclear proliferation
  • For Florence Parly, the Aukus partnership “breaks a taboo” with the supply of nuclear-powered submarines. “It is a sensitive technology which, until September 15, was never exported by a P5 country (permanent members of the UN Security Council, Editor’s note), especially since it is are reactors using highly enriched uranium ”. For the minister, “there is a risk of nuclear proliferation. It is a precedent which can have serious implications ”, in particular for other countries tempted to acquire this technology.