The Mutual Assistance Programme (MAP) is an integral component of NZ’s contribution to peace and security in the Asia Pacific.
MAP activities include the provision of training, technical and other support to South Pacific and Southeast Asian security and defence forces.
The objectives of the programme are:
- to support NZ foreign policy by maintaining and strengthening bilateral relations in the defence field with countries with whom NZ has a common interest in regional security;
- to contribute to the effectiveness and self-reliance of the forces of cooperating countries without entering into any operational commitments;
- to facilitate opportunities for the NZDF to gain experiences in training and operating in tropical environments;
- to facilitate visits to NZ by elements of the security forces of the MAP countries for the purpose of exercising and training with the NZDF.
This assistance is provided by providing training to personnel (both police and military) from MAP partner countries on a range of NZDF courses with an emphasis on leadership, professional development and skills training.
The MAP also provides a number of Technical Advisers (TAs), currently eight across the South Pacific including the Cook Islands and Timor Leste. The NZDF will shortly be posting two TAs to Fiji. Significant TA roles include the Deputy Chief of Staff (Colonel) serving in the HQ PNGDF, and a Strategic Adviser (Lieutenant Colonel) to the Chief of Staff in the Headquarters of the Timor Leste Defence Force. One of the TAs in the Cook Islands serves as the Maritime Surveillance Adviser as part of Australia’s Pacific Maritime Surveillance Programme, and demonstrates one aspect of Closer Defence Relationships between NZ and Australia.