India-Australia first JWG meeting on Coal and Mines

India and Australia held their first Joint Working Group (JWG) meeting on Coal and Mines on September 23, 2021 through Video conferencing.

Highlights

  • JWG meeting is a precursor to the upcoming India-Australia Energy Dialogue which is scheduled to be held in October 2021.
  • Meeting was co-chaired by Additional Secretary in Ministry of Coal Vinod Kumar Tiwari from India and Head of Resources Division Paul Trotman from Australia.
  • During the meeting, Indian side overviewed the coal sector in India and presented emerging scenario for future. He also noted the priority areas that are required to be included for possible collaborations in coal and mining sectors in India as well as Australia.
  • It focused on Indian coal resources in the present & future scenario, as well as minerals demand & supply scenario.
  • They also discussed the collaboration on Clean Coal Technology, Coal Bed Methane, Surface Coal Gasification, sharing of Technology Coal Based Hydrogen & Carbon Capture Utilization between both the countries.

India – Australia ties

Both the countries have built strategic trust on each year over the year. They established the diplomatic relations in the pre-Independence period with the opening of Consulate General of India as a Trade Office in 1941 in Sydney. Lieutenant-General Iven Mackay was appointed as the first High Commissioner to India, in March 1944. In 1945, first High Commissioner of India to Australia arrived to Canberra in 1945. Since then, relations since then have witnessed a significant thaw. In 2014, Australia signed a uranium supply deal with India.

Economic relationship

As of 2016, India’s exports to Australia is approximately at US$ 4.6 billion while India’s import from Australia was at US$ 11 billion. India mainly exports Passenger Motor Vehicle & machinery; Medicaments & Refined Petroleum; and Pearls, Gems & Jewellery to Australia while India mainly imports Coal, Non-monetary Gold, Wool, Copper, Fertilizers & Education related services from Australia.

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