India-Australia Virtual Summit

On 21st March, India and Australia held a virtual summit. At the summit, there were talks regarding critical investment, critical minerals, migration, defense, technological cooperation, and digital sectors.

Overview:

  • PM Modi and Scott Morrison, Australian Prime Minister took part in this summit.
  • The first Virtual Summit was held in 2020.
  • Following the latest virtual summit, the decision has been made to hold summits annually at the Heads of Government level.

About critical minerals and investments sector

Regarding the cooperation in the critical mining sector, an MoU was signed between Khanij Bidesh India Ltd. (KABIL) and the Critical Mineral Facilitation Office of Australia. Increased cooperation between Australia’s pension and sovereign fund, known as Future Fund and National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF) of India has also been envisaged. The pact also aims to raise India’s trade with Australia.

About defense and security sector

“General Vipin Rawat young defense officers exchange program” set-up has been announced by both the countries. This would help young officers from both countries will be able to familiarise themselves with each other. The Quad grouping and its significance in the Indo-Pacific were also discussed.

About Migration

A letter of intent was also signed between both the countries which aimed to work towards a “Migration and Mobility Partnership Agreement.” This agreement will help in facilitating migration between both nations.

About digital and technological sector

Integration of digital payment systems of both nations has been proposed by India. The payments systems are the United Payments Interface of India and the New Payments Platform of Australia. The integration of the systems will help both countries and their respective citizens. There has also been cooperation in the space sector between the nations.

Conclusion

The countries will also look to extend cooperation on various other critical sectors such as climate change, the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure, the International Solar Alliance, etc.

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