Sydney was the final leg of his Asia-Pacific tour, where he seeks to assert India’s role as a regional power in the face of China’s growing influence.
The Indian community is the second largest in Australia after the British. There are 673,000 Indians living in Australia, which has a population of 26 million.
“The community is the most important bridge in the bilateral trade relationship between India and Australia,” Judy McKay, national chair of the Australian-India Business Council, told AFP.
Bilateral trade between India and Australia reached 46.5 billion Australian dollars (31 billion US dollars) last year and is expected to increase after the entry into force of the free trade agreement in December .
McKay said Australia and India hoped to sign a broader economic deal this year, noting that their relationship has extended beyond resources to areas such as renewable energy and technology.
US President Joe Biden has been forced to cancel a planned summit in Australia to return to Washington to negotiate with Republicans over raising the debt ceiling.
Modi’s visit comes as China expands its diplomatic, financial and military presence in the Asia-Pacific region.
Over the weekend, Modi attended a Quad Alliance meeting in Japan with leaders from the United States, Japan and Australia, in a bid to counter Beijing’s expansionism.
Modi arrived in Australia hours after attending a summit of 14 South Pacific nations in Papua New Guinea, the first visit by an Indian prime minister to the Pacific nation.
“We share your faith in multilateralism. We support a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific. We respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries,” Modi told Pacific leaders.
Read the Latest World News Today on The Eastern Herald.
Copyright © 2023 The Eastern Herald.
For the latest updates and news follow The Eastern Herald on Google News, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
Help us continue our mission to deliver the latest news and stories by becoming a supporter of our newspaper. Your support will help us to continue to provide high-quality journalism and to ensure that our content remains free and accessible to all. Click here to show your support. Thank you!