Modi’s trip to boost Australia-India ties

Australia and India to boost trade, investment, energy and security partnership after a gap of 28 years

Melbourne – In the first trip to Australia by an Indian Prime Minister in 28 years, Prime Minister Narendra Modi would interact with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott to boost trade, investment, energy and security partnership, and look for avenues to remove red tape that investors face in the two countries. Following Modi-Abbott talks on November 17-18 in Canberra and Melbourne, India and Australia will ink five MoUs in the areas of social security, transfer of sentenced prisoners, counter-narcotics, culture and tourism.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott during a press conference in Canberra, Monday, March, 17, 2014. (AAP Image/Alan Porritt) NO ARCHIVING
Australian PM Tony Abbott

Modi, who is visiting Austrlia within three months of Abbott’s visit to India as PM, will arrive in Brisbane on November 15 and cover Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne during his four-day trip, signalling an interest in expanding bilateral ties.

“The India-Australia relationship is reaching a new maturity and it’s reaching a tipping point where it will become a much more comprehensive and trusting relationship” according to Rory Medcalf, senior research fellow on India Strategic Affairs at the University of New South Wales.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also all set to meet top Australian business leaders at Melbourne roundtable on 18 November. The meeting will take place at the Government’s house after Modi attends the G20 summit in Brisbane.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks during 12th ASEAN-India summit at Myanmar International Convention Center in Naypyitaw, Myanmar on November 12
Indian PM Narendra Modi

About 500 CEOs and Managing Directors of some of Australia’s biggest companies will attend a lecture to be delivered by Prime Minister Narendra Modi where the visiting Indian leader would interact with the who’s who of the Australian industry and business houses.

Australia’s top business leaders, including BHP Billiton CEO Andrew Mackenzie; HSBC Bank Australia CEO Tony Cripps; Anthony Joseph Pratt, Chairman and CEO of Pratt Industries and Global Chairman of Visy Industries and Phil Edmands, managing director, Rio Tinto are expected to attend the roundtable. The meeting would also be attended by almost 20 top Indian industry leaders including Chairman of Essar Group Shashi Ruia, Gautam Adani of Adani group, Anand Mahindra of Mahindra Group, BP Rao of BHEL and Vishal Sikka of Infosys Ltd.

The event will be hosted by the Governor of Victoria and has been organised by the Australia India Business Council or AIBC, which was established in 1986 by Mr Gandhi and Prime Minister Bob Hawke of Australia.

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About the Author: Akhtar Jamal

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