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NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi And their Australian counterparts Scott morrison An online summit was held on Thursday on ways to further broaden bilateral relations in areas such as healthcare, trade and defense.
In his opening remarks, Modi said that he believes that this is the “right time and right opportunity”, which makes the relationship stronger. India and Australia.
“We have immense possibilities to make our friendship stronger,” Modi said. is believed. ”
The Prime Minister said that India is committed to expanding its relations with Australia at a wider and faster pace, noting that it is important not only for both countries, but also for the Indo-Pacific region and the world.
“Our broad strategic partnership role will be more important in this period of global pandemics. The world needs a coordinated and collaborative approach to get out of the economic and social side effects of this pandemic,” he said.
This is the first time that Modi has organized a “bilateral” virtual summit with a foreign leader.
In 2009 relations between the two nations were upgraded to a ‘strategic partnership’ level. Since then, the two countries have expanded their cooperation in a range of key areas.
In its 2017 foreign policy white paper, Australia recognized India as “a pre-eminent maritime power.” Indian ocean Countries “and a” front-rank partner “of Australia.
Bilateral economic engagement has also increased considerably in the last few years. According to official figures, trade between the two countries was approximately $ 21 billion in 2018-19.
Australia’s cumulative investment in India is approximately $ 10.74 billion while India’s total investment in Australia is $ 10.45 billion. The Australian Super Pension Fund has invested $ 1 billion in India’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund.
In the last few years, both countries have been focusing on expanding maritime cooperation.
India and Australia began their first bilateral naval exercise ‘AUSINDEX’ in 2015, focusing specifically on deepening defense and maritime cooperation in the Indian Ocean.
The third edition of AUSINDEX-2019 was held in the Bay of Bengal in April 2019.
Australia has been supportive of India’s position on cross-border terrorism and called on Pakistan to take meaningful action against terrorist groups operating from its soil.
Australia also sponsored UNSC’s proposal to declare Azhar Masood a global terrorist.
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