IND – AUS Relations
Australia PM India Visit – Australia and India established diplomatic relations for the first time in the pre-independence period when the Consulate General of India opened as a Trade Office in Sydney in 1941.
When the Australian government condemned India’s nuclear tests in 1998, bilateral relations reached an all-time low.
In recognition of India’s “impeccable” non-proliferation record, Australia PM signed a Uranium supply agreement with India in 2014, the first of its kind with a non-signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
The India-Australia bilateral relationship is based on shared values of pluralistic, Westminster-style democracies, Commonwealth traditions, expanding economic engagement, and increasing high-level interaction.
Common characteristics such as strong, vibrant, secular, and multicultural democracies, a free press, an independent judicial system, and the English language serve as the foundation for cooperation. India is a major source of skilled immigrants to Australia.
Indian Population in Australia
According to the 2021 Census, approximately 9.76 lakh people in Australia reported Indian ancestry, making them the second largest group of overseas-born residents in Australia.
During the India-Australia Leaders’ Virtual Summit in 2020, the Prime Ministers of both countries elevated the bilateral relationship from Strategic Partnership to Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.
Both countries’ prime ministers will meet in Glasgow during COP26 in 2021. There will be a series of high-level engagements and ministerial visits in 2022 and 2023, including an India-Australia virtual summit and Foreign Ministers meeting.
Several significant announcements were made during the 2nd India-Australia Virtual Summit, including A Letter of Intent on a Migration and Mobility Partnership Arrangement.
Australia-China relations have become strained for a variety of reasons, including Australia PM ban on Huawei from 5G networks, a call for an investigation into the origins of Covid-19, and condemnation of China’s human rights violations in Xinjiang and Hong Kong.
China retaliated by imposing trade barriers on Australian exports and cutting off all ministerial contact. India is facing Chinese aggression along the border, as evidenced by incidents such as the Galwan Valley clash.
Both Australia and India support a rules-based international order and are working to establish inclusive regional institutions in the Indo-Pacific to promote further economic integration.
The countries’ participation in the Quad (India, Australia, the United States, and Japan) is an example of their shared interests.
Both are members of the Quad, the Commonwealth, the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA), the ASEAN Regional Forum, and the Asia Pacific Partnership on Climate and Clean Development and have attended East Asian Summits.
Both countries have also worked together as members of the World Trade Organization’s Five Interested Parties (FIP).
Australia is a key member of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and supports India’s membership in the organization.
India is Australia’s 17th largest trading partner, and Australia is India’s 9th largest trading partner.
Bilateral trade between India and Australia was worth $27.5 billion in 2021, with the potential to grow to around $50 billion in the next five years.
Because of shared values and interests, India-Australia relations have improved in recent years.
Debutante Visit of Australia PM
Today marks the start of Australia PM Anthony Albanese’s first official visit to India (8 March). Albanese is in India for the India-Australia Summit, which ended on March 11.
It is Australia PM Albanese’s first bilateral visit to India since the Labour Party took office in May 2022. The visit to India aims to strengthen bilateral relations between India and Australia.
At 4:10 p.m., Australia PM Albanese arrived at Ahmedabad’s Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport (IST).
He then went to the Sabarmati Ashram. He arrived at the Raj Bhavan at 5:20 p.m. to take part in the Holi celebrations.
The Australia PM left for Mumbai on March 9 (Thursday). He attended the Ceremonial Reception at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi on March 10.
Following that, a wreath-laying ceremony was held at the Rajghat. Albanese will meet with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on the same day.
PM Modi and his Australian counterpart
In New Delhi, Australia PM and Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Hyderabad House and President Droupadi Murmu at the Rashtrapati Bhawan.
PM Modi and Australia PM will also attend the first day of the fourth Test between Australia and India in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy, which will be held tomorrow at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Motera (9 March).
During the Australian Prime Minister’s visit, India is expected to announce significant investments in the rare earth sector in Australia.
KABIL (Khanij Bidesh India Limited) is planning a significant investment in Australia’s rare earth sector, which the Australian government applauds.
India and Australia are eager to collaborate in the field of clean energy and have launched several initiatives in this regard.
In February 2022, India and Australia signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) on New and Renewable Energy, which calls for collaboration to reduce the cost of renewable energy (RE) technologies, particularly ultralow-cost solar and clean hydrogen.
Australia supports India’s bid for a seat on an expanded United Nations Security Council. Both India and Australia are members of the Commonwealth, IORA, the ASEAN Regional Forum, the International Solar Alliance, the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure, and the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, and have attended East Asia Summits.
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