Scott Morrison, Narendra Modi interact at virtual meet over economic issues

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison held the 2nd India-Australia Virtual Summit on Monday. The two leaders reaffirmed their commitment to the India-Australia Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP).

Leaders committed to deepening the economic relationship under the CSP, including through the Australia India Business Exchange. Prime Minister referred to the launch of the Australia India Infrastructure Forum and Australia’s intention to open a new Consulate-General in Bengaluru and the announcement of new initiatives to drive two-way trade and innovation, including cooperation on standards, future skills and a new Australia‑India Innovation Network.

Both the leaders emphasised the importance of an early resolution of the issue of taxation of offshore income of Indian firms under the India‑Australia Double Taxation Avoidance Agreement (DTAA).

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Co-operation in the field of science and technology between the two countries was also discussed. They welcomed the extension of the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund (AISRF) – a pillar of collaboration on science, technology and research – and the commitment to build on the successful 2021 India‑Australia Circular Economy Hackathon.

 Leaders welcomed the fourth India-Australia Energy Dialogue held between Minister Singh and Minister Taylor on 15 February 2022, supporting wider energy and resources collaboration.

They welcomed the Letter of Intent between India and Australia on New and Renewable Energy Technology, which aims at driving down the cost of low and zero emissions technologies to be cost competitive with higher emitting alternatives, and committed to intensify cooperation on clean technologies, including through research and development for the required breakthroughs and through forums like Mission Innovation.

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Leaders underlined the importance of India and Australia’s space engagement including Australia’s ongoing support of India’s Gaganyaan Space Program.

Prime Minister Morrison announced the establishment of the Centre for Australia‑India Relations, to be based in Australia, in addition to the new Maitri Scholarships Program, the Maitri Grants and Fellowships Program and the Australia‑India Maitri Cultural Partnership.