Malaysia's transport minister is expected to visit Australia to discuss more plans in resuming the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 which disappeared on March 8 along with 239 people on board.
Australia's Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss will meet with Malaysia's Foreign Minister Liow Tiong Lai on August 19 including the rest of the MH370 search crews and relevant agencies.
In a statement, Lai said the commitment of governments like Australia and Malaysia has remained firm in finding the wreckage of MH370. Australia has signed a contract with Dutch company Fugro to conduct an undersea search for the missing Malaysian jet.
Nearly five months after the plane's disappearance, the search is expected to continue in the southern Indian Ocean off the coast of West Australia. Reports said authorities are still confident that the lost aircraft lies in the targeted area.
Australia has firmly said the MH17 disaster will not affect the ongoing search operations for the lost MH370. Underwater surveys have continued in an effort to recover plane debris or at least some signs of the lost MH370.
Former Australia defence chief Angus Houston, now head of the MH370 recovery operations, was sent to Ukraine to oversee the retrieval and transport of bodies of the Australian passengers aboard the downed MH17 on July 7. He will resume his position once arrangements are made to continue the MH370 search.
Truss said Australia's commitment to the search for MH370 is "not diminished" by the MH17 recovery operations. He added that there were things needed to be addressed urgently but the MH370 search will not be interrupted.
Truss said the underwater search is expected to last for a year. He added that the Australian government owes it to the families of the people aboard MH370 and the rest of the world to solve the plane's mysterious disappearance.
The Malaysian Boeing 777 plane had disappeared while carrying 239 people on board from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing less than five months before the downing of MH17.