Deputy Labor Leader Richard Marles says it is “critically important” for Australia to improve its defence capabilities amid the recent announcement of the AUKUS trilateral partnership with the UK and US.

“I think improving Australia’s defence capability is also a critically important step in improving the stability of the region,” Mr Marles said.

“And we acknowledge what has been announced today, and its contribution to that.”

However, in light of the cancellation of a $90 billion submarine agreement with France, Mr Marles believes it is “important” for Australia to work on its relationship with the country.

“This is a country with whom we have a lot of shared interest, and it’s really important in light of the decision which has been made here … that the government does everything it can to get that relationship in the right place.”

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