05/06/2024 12:31 AM

KUALA LUMPUR, June 4 (Bernama) -- Foreign citizens with permanent residency in Australia will soon be able to serve in Australia's armed forces.

In a bid to boost recruitment, eligible New Zealanders living in Australia can apply to join the Australian Defence Force (ADF) as early as July this year.

Under this expanded criterion, eligible permanent residents who have been living in Australia for 12 months will also be able to apply to join the ADF starting from January 2025.

Australian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Richard Marles said Australia and New Zealand have a longstanding relationship, and opening the ADF to New Zealanders living in Australia will increase opportunities whilst strengthening the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) bond.

“The Australian Government has chosen to grow the ADF  because it is essential to meet the nation’s security challenges through the next decade and beyond,” he said in a joint statement.

Meanwhile, Australian Defence Personnel Minister Matt Keogh said recruiting from a wider pool of people will help ensure the ADF reflects the full diversity of Australia and is able to draw on the talents of the entirety of Australian society.

“Our people are our most important capability, but reversing the Defence recruitment shortfalls of the last Government requires innovation – we’re being bold in order to grow the ADF,” he said in the joint statement.

In April, media reported that the ADF is under-recruited by about 4,400 personnel as of January this year. 



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