In the first part of this brief discussion we have explained to you what is meant by the Aukus Pact. In this second part we will instead analyze the reactions of other countries, such as France and China, following the decisions taken by the United States, Australia and Great Britain.
The dispute with France
If the geographic area concerned is that of the Indo-Pacific, as we explained earlier, the question arises as to why France did not willingly accept the announcement of the Aukus Pact, even going so far as to recall its own ambassadors at home from the offices American and Australian for urgent consultation; in diplomatic language this is a clear message of disappointment from Paris. The announcement of the partnership between Canberra, Washington and London leads to the cancellation of a commercial agreement between Australia and France concerning the supply of submarines, causing the latter significant economic losses. The split of the contract with the French industry Naval Group was harshly criticized by its government, calling it "a deplorable decision" and contrary to the spirit of cooperation that has characterized relations between the two countries to date. Australia, on the other hand, does not intend to retract its position on the demotion of the submarine agreement, claiming to have acted in the interest of its nation and the development of new technologies, albeit understanding the French discontent.
Europe remains astonished at the reality of having been kept in the dark about the creation of this new alliance in the Indo-Pacific, since it was certainly not organized in a few days. Despite this, Brussels has declared itself open to cooperation, as long as peaceful relations are safeguarded with China, a fundamental trading partner, with which it is not convenient to have a confrontation.
The response of the Asian giant was not long in coming, defining the Aukus Pact as an "extremely irresponsible" choice, which will lead to instability in the region and disfavour peaceful relations. The Chinese embassy located in the United States has advised the three governments that have signed the Pact to abandon the Cold War climate and put aside ideological prejudice. But can the Aukus Pact really be defined as a move against Chinese communism in the name of a Western ideology that seems ever closer to its decline? As mentioned earlier, China's role was never mentioned during the Aukus Pact conferences, although it is clear that one of the alliance's main objectives is to stem Beijing’s expansion. This will happen not only by ensuring the safety of maritime trade thanks to the new submarines, but also by creating a strategic military outpost. Understandably, Beijing has frowned upon the new alliance, as it could undermine its interests. Although China has declared itself as a nation promoting world peace, it has remained steadfast in its positions, not retreating an inch into disputed waters.
Opinions of the ASEAN
However, China is not the only one interested in the repercussions that the Aukus pact could bring, but the opinions of the other countries belonging to ASEAN are rather heterogeneous. While the Philippines and Singapore see the Aukus Pact as a good tool to counterbalance Chinese expansion in the area, Vietnam, China's main competitor in the South China Sea, has maintained a detached position, reaffirming the importance of peace and cooperation for the economic and social development of the area. Malaysia and Indonesia have been openly concerned about the damage that this Pact could cause, putting at risk the climate of stability in the region; Jakarta even drew attention to Australia in compliance with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea and Nuclear Non-Proliferation, of which it is a signatory.
This does not mean that Malaysia and Indonesia have cleared in favor of China, but that the decision of the United States, Great Britain and Australia has aroused much concern even within the Asian sphere.
At the moment it is impossible to predict the real repercussions that the Aukus Pact will have on international equilibrium. What is certain is that it could trigger changes that will also affect our daily life.