Why Australia is a country that makes a difference in the world

By Alexander Downer

Well, in the midst of all this gloom emerged a recent report by a British think tank called the Henry Jackson Society, which did some very interesting work. It took the 20 major nations of the world and did an audit of their geopolitical capabilities. It measured everything from government efficiency, the size of the economy and demographics to cultural prestige, diplomatic leverage and military might. It’s a very analytical piece of work untrammelled by partisan politics or ideology.

Not surprisingly, the United States came out top. And it came out top by a very big margin. From our perspective, what is remarkable is out of the 20 major nations of the world, we come eighth. We may have a relatively small population but we have an economy that matches Russia’s, we have sophisticated technology, a strong defence force that we are prepared to use and, interestingly, we are ranked fourth in terms of cultural prestige. Australia also has diplomatic clout. We’re seen as a serious country with government structures that are democratic and a public service that is highly professional.

Read the full article in the Financial Review

HJS



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