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The Indian Prime Minister will discuss strengthening bilateral defense and security ties in Australia

The Indian Prime Minister will discuss strengthening bilateral defense and security ties in Australia

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Australia on Tuesday, according to his initial statement, and the main purpose of his visit is to strengthen bilateral defense and security relations between his country and Australia.

This is Modi’s second visit to Australia as prime minister, having first gone there in 2014, a few months after he was elected.

Modi told The Australian that he wanted to take the relationship between India and Australia to a higher level, to strengthen defense and security ties between the two countries. “As democracies, India and Australia share a common interest in a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific.” – he said in the interview, which was published on Tuesday.

Regarding Modi’s visit, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese stressed in Parliament that “India is a key strategic partner” of the country.

He also said they want to finish negotiations on a free trade agreement between the two countries, which began in 2011, by the end of the year.

India is Australia’s sixth most important trading partner. Last year, the exchange of goods and services brought in 46.5 billion Australian dollars (10,707 billion forints), but they want to further expand bilateral trade so that Australia becomes less dependent on China, the country’s largest trading partner.

On Tuesday, Narendra Modi will address the Indian diaspora at a stadium in Sydney, where Albanians will also make an appearance. All tickets for the event in the 20,000-seat stadium are sold out. According to the programme, the two heads of government will hold consultations on bilateral relations on Wednesday.

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Modi is the only one among the leaders of the four countries that make up the Quartet (Australia, India, the United States, Japan) to travel to Australia despite US President Joe Biden canceling the meeting last week and returning to Washington from the Group of Seven. summit in Hiroshima.

Later, Japanese Prime Minister Kiseda Fumio, who was hosting the G7 leaders, canceled his trip to Australia.

Although the Quartet meeting on quadripartite security issues that was originally scheduled to take place in Sydney was cancelled, Modi met in Japan last weekend with the leaders of the other countries in the Quartet and discussed how they could act against China’s rise in the Indo-Pacific.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is pictured (Image: EPA)

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