Both a European official and Australian Trade Minister Dan Tehan confirmed on Friday the postponement of a long-planned round of free trade talks between Australia and the European Union. The delay follows a row between the European Union and Australia over Canberra’s decision to cancel the purchase of French submarines worth more than 30 billion euros.
The talks, the 12th round of talks on a free trade agreement between Australia and the European Union, were originally scheduled for October 12 and have now been postponed by a month.
Australia canceled a deal with French defense company Naval Group last month to build a fleet of conventional submarines. Instead, the country is building at least eight nuclear-powered submarines using American and British technology. It has also entered into a security cooperation with the United States and the United Kingdom, the so-called AUKUS Agreement.
Then France accused Australia and the United States of stabbing her in the back. Paris even recalled its ambassadors from Canberra and Washington. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen expressed doubts on September 21 whether the European Union could still conclude a trade agreement with Australia.
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