Blinken says door open for New Zealand to engage on AUKUS


  • World
  • Thursday, 27 Jul 2023

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) poses with New Zealand's Prime Minister Chris Hipkins at Parliament in Wellington on July 27, 2023. MARTY MELVILLE/Pool via REUTERS

SYDNEY (Reuters) - U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Thursday the door was open for New Zealand to engage with the AUKUS project as appropriate.

The multi-stage AUKUS project announced in March is planned to culminate in the late 2030s and early 2040s with British and Australian production and operation of a new submarine class - SSN-AUKUS - and include "cutting edge" U.S. technologies.

"The door's very much open for New Zealand and other partners to engage as they see appropriate going forward," Blinken told a news conference in Wellington.

"We've long worked together on the most important national security issues. And so as we further develop AUKUS, as I said, the door is open to engagement."

(Reporting by Renju Jose in Sydney; Editing by Alasdair Pal)

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