Regional power shifts could strengthen Australia-Indonesia strategic ties.

As Asia undergoes major change and tectonic shifts in power take place, there are profound questions about what this means for Australia’s defence and strategic outlook.

One key question is what new developments like Indonesia’s ongoing military modernisation and increased spending mean. With the country’s official defence budget multiplying four times over the last 10 years to US$ 8 billion, it’s no small consideration.

In this video, ANU strategic studies expert Hugh White and former Minister for Defence Robert Hill AC discuss what a changing strategic landscape means for Indonesia-Australia bilateral relations.

The key message is that change in the region’s balance of power might be just the thing to bring the two countries closer together.

“In the longer term, there’s likely to be a closer convergence of Indonesian and Australian strategic perspectives,” says White.

“In a sense the more contested the region becomes, the stronger the issues that Australia and Indonesia have in common and the further we’re driven together.”

Watch the full seven-minute discussion in the player above.