Australia´s New Border Agency


The increasing problem of immigration in the region is making Australia nervous, as it fear the consequences of long term influx on the country. New Zealand, Indonesia, Papua, New Guinea and Nauru are the countries where the immigrants come from and Australia is concerned about these migrants, as Australia have traditionally served been wary about imposing limitations due to diplomatic interest. Until now.

 

The Australian Defense Minister, have voiced his concern about the increasing number of immigrants and as a result of this, Australian authorities have announced the creation of the Australian Border Force (ABF) which will begin operating in July next year and will act as the nation’s single frontline enforcement agency. Minister of Defence Scott Morisson justifies these changes in policy by saying: “This measure will save hundreds of million (dollars) but it is not a saving measure, it is a reform measure.”

The Minister says ABF will be “intelligence-led, mobile” and “technology enabled”, and will operate strategically to ensure officers are deployed “to greatest effect”. “Disciplined, uniformed Border Force officers, some armed, will carry out these tasks and will be supported by mobile and other portable technology which will enhance their ability to clear cargo, remotely access data and information, and wirelessly report back to Strategic Border Command,” Mr Morrison told the Lowy Institute in Sydney.

S. Morrison said that the ABF will always put the national security first. Some people is opposing this change in politics, however Morrison argues Australia is in need of a political reformation in order to secure its borders and he backs up this claim by drawing parallels to other western countries.

Furthermore, with the ABF they can secure the stability of their GDP, which traditionally have been prone to fluctuation and is affected negatively due to the high level of immigrants. This is not only a social problem it affects all areas (Social, economic, political, cultural…). In other words, Australia and its economy could benefit from the proposed measures as it calls for a more predicable and linear foreign policy, reducing costs and increasing efficiency, ensuring Australia gets more bang for the buck.

The neigbouring countries supports these measures as they are deemed necessary to provide a sound and reliable fix to Australia and its challenges with immigration. However, some government officials have claimed the measures to be too drastic, infringing on basic rights and limiting individual freedom. Additonal sources, also suggest these measures could create friction in the Pacific region, where Australia serves as a diplomatic figurehead and is renowned for its pragmatic and close ties to its less economcically developed neighbours.

In the end, the reformation of its border agency suggest Australia is prepared to face rising challenges, and to improve its mobility and allocation of resources. More widespread use of technology and decreased command chain means Australia and its border patrol 2.0 is ready to embark on a mission. However, the long term consequences are hard to forecast and the country depend on its close ties with neighbouring countries, serving as a reminder of the fragile nature of this policy.

Bibliography:
http://www.lowyinterpreter.org%2Fpost%2F2014%2F05%2F14%2FDefence-budget-2014-Heavy-weights-still-in-the-rack.aspx%3FCOLLCC%3D906509343&h=SAQHcT0G2
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-05-09/immigration-minister-scott-morrison-announces-new-border-agency/5441968

http://www.immi.gov.au/About/Pages/australian-border-force.aspxv

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