SYDNEY: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday used “cricket diplomacy” to explain the deepening ties between India and Australia, and said, “Our ties have entered the T20 mode!”
“I am visiting Australia within 2 months of the visit of my friend Prime Minister Albanese to India. This is our sixth meeting in the last one year. This reflects the depth of our comprehensive relations, convergence in our views and maturity of our ties. In the language of cricket, our ties have entered the T20 mode,” said PM Modi in a joint press briefing with Australian PM Anthony Albanese.
He also invited PM Albanese to the cricket World Cup in India, adding, ‘”You will get to see the grand Diwali celebration.”
“I invite PM Anthony Albanese and all Australian cricket fans to India for the Cricket World Cup this year. At that time, you will also get to see the grand Diwali celebration in India,” said PM Modi.
The upcoming 2023 ICC Cricket World Cup, which will be hosted by India for the first time in its entirety, is likely to start on October 5 and will end on November 19, with the final scheduled to be at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad, which is the world’s largest cricket stadium.
“In my first year as Prime Minister, I met with PM Modi six times, which underscores the value we place on deepening ties between our nations. Australia is a better place because of the contributions of the Indian-Australian community, and we want to see more connections between our countries,” said the Australian PM.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Prime Minister Narendra Modi met in Sydney on Wednesday for bilateral discussions that deepened the friendship between the two nations.
The Australia-India relationship is already strong, but both saw the potential for growth and an opportunity for a better future.
The meeting is built on the outcomes from the Australia-India Annual Leaders’ Summit in March and reinforced their commitment to an open, prosperous and secure Indo-Pacific.
“Our democratic values are the foundation of our ties. Our relations are based on mutual trust and respect. The Indian community in Australia is a living bridge between our countries. Last evening at the Indian community event, Prime Minister Albanese and I unveiled “Little India” of Harris Park. I could also sense the popularity of Prime Minister Albanese in the event,” said PM Modi at the joint press briefing.
He said that in the meeting with PM Albanese they discussed Australia-India Comprehensive Strategic Partnership taking to greater heights in the next decade.
The leaders discussed the strength of the bilateral trade, investment and business relationship and reiterated their shared ambition for an early conclusion of the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement.
“We had detailed discussions on the scope of cooperation in new areas. Last year, the India-Australia Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement came into effect. Today, we have decided to focus on Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement. This will further strengthen our economic partnership and open up new avenues for cooperation,” said PM Modi.
Further reinforcing the economic and people-to-people ties between our two countries, the leaders announced the finalization of the Australia-India Migration and Mobility Partnership Arrangement, which will promote the two-way mobility of students, graduates, academic researchers and business people, while also enhancing cooperation to prevent irregular migration and people smuggling.
“Today, we signed the Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement. This will further strengthen our living bridge. As I announced yesterday, for a continued deepening relationship, we will soon open a new Indian Consulate in Brisbane, just as Australia has announced opening a new Consulate in Bengaluru,” said PM Modi.
The Prime Ministers welcomed progress towards establishing an Australia-India Green Hydrogen Taskforce and today announced the Terms of Reference for the Australia-India Green Hydrogen Taskforce have been agreed.
“We had constructive discussions on strengthening our strategic cooperation in the sectors of mining and critical minerals. We identified concrete areas for cooperation in the renewable energy sector. We decided to set up a task force on Green Hydrogen. Yesterday, I had useful discussions with Australian CEOs on investments in different areas and in Business Roundtable today, I will discuss cooperation in trade, investment and technology,” said PM Modi.
He said that India is looking forward to greater Australian investment in India, adding, “India will soon become the third-largest economy in the world. We are creating a favourable ecosystem for attracting more investment in India, in fields such as electronics, defence and other sectors, and I think that there is huge potential for further cooperation between India and Australia, between our private sectors. The CEO forum organised during your visit recently to India was also a very positive development.”
He said that the scope of India-Australia ties is not limited to merely our two countries, it is also linked to regional stability, peace and global welfare.
“A few days ago in Quad Summit in Hiroshima with Prime Minister Albanese we discussed Indo-Pacific issues,” said PM Modi.
He said that India-Australia cooperation can be beneficial for the growth of Global South.
“The Indian tradition of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam‘ that views the entire world as one family is the central theme of India’s G20 presidency. I thank PM Albanese from the bottom of my heart for Australia’s cooperation for our G20 initiatives,” said PM Modi.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Albanese and Foreign Minister Penny Wong announced that the new Centre for Australia-India Relations will be headquartered in Parramatta. The Centre began operations this month and will drive deeper engagement with India through business, policy and cultural activities and work with Indian diaspora communities. The Centre will be led by Chair Swati Dave and CEO Tim Thomas.
The leaders also welcomed the City of Perth and the Western Australian Government’s decision to rename a road along Perth’s Swan River in recognition of Private Nain Singh Sailani, one of 12 known ANZACs from the Indian community who fought in the Australian Imperial Force during the First World War.
“Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Australia has strengthened the close and strong relationship that Australia enjoys with India. This is a relationship we need to invest in. Our strong partnership with India will deliver benefits for Australia in trade, investment and business, and in regional security and stability,” said Albanese. (ANI)