Australian Embassy
Belgium, Luxembourg and Mission to the European Union and NATO

Relations with NATO

Australia and NATO work together to address shared security challenges affecting both the Euro-Atlantic and Indo-Pacific.

Although Australia and NATO have been engaged in formal dialogue and cooperation since 2005, Australia’s history in operating with NATO began in 1953 during Exercise CORONET. CORONET was a physical demonstration of NATO air power at a time of Soviet expansion in Europe. It bought together about 2000 aircraft and 40 000 personnel from the air forces of nine NATO countries and one non-NATO country (Australia).

As a key Partner nation, Australia made significant contributions to NATO-led efforts in Afghanistan and remains an active contributor to NATO’s mission in Iraq.  In 2014, Australia was granted NATO Enhanced Opportunities Partner status as a ‘valuable, capable and reliable partner’, alongside Finland, Georgia, Jordan, Sweden and Ukraine. 

Australia’s relationship with NATO continues to evolve in response to today’s complex security environment.  Our partnership addresses cross-cutting security issues of global concern, defending the rules-based international order.  As a NATO Asia-Pacific Four (AP4) partner - alongside Japan, New Zealand and the Republic of Korea - Australia’s Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese, attended the June 2022 Madrid NATO Leaders’ Summit for the first time.

Ongoing cooperation is guided by the Australia-NATO Individually Tailored Partnership Programme (renewed in 2022) that focuses on 13 areas of mutual interest including: strategic dialogue and consultation; operations; cyber security; capability development; women, peace and security; defence science and technology; and resilience.

Australia is a significant non-NATO contributor to efforts supporting the sovereignty of Ukraine and its struggle against the illegal and unjust invasion by Russia.