India and Australia sign six pacts including combating terrorism

"The Prime Ministers committed to deepening the bilateral defence and security partnership..."

Mr Turnbull said it is now up to the United Nations Security Council and Russian Federation in particular, to bring this conflict to an end.

India has resisted Australia's demand that it open up its market to agricultural products - arguing that could endanger the livelihood of the vast number of small-scale farmers in India.

In September 2014, India and Australia signed a Civil Nuclear Agreement for Australian supply of uranium to India. The commercial deals for the supply of uranium is being further negotiated. Prime Minister O'Neil said they will be assisting mostly in providing logistics support and also act as global observers during the election.

On Tuesday, Mr Turnbull will take part in a strategic roundtable meeting involving Australia and Indian security and foreign policy experts.

India and Australia have reaffirmed their commitment to a peaceful and prosperous Indo-Pacific, based on mutual respect and cooperation.

Mr Turnbull, who had just spoken with the defence force chief, said the parties in the Middle East, including Australian forces, were avoiding operating in areas where conflict could occur.

On his first official visit to the economic powerhouse in waiting, Mr Turnbull has also warned businesses they must be realistic about what deals can be achieved with India.

The three countries, along with the United States, were part of the now-defunct Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, an informal strategic grouping started in 2007 to discuss issues of interest, such as defence cooperation.

"Both leaders recognised that India and Australia share common interests in ensuring maritime security and the safety of sea lines of communication".

In this regard, the two Prime Ministers also welcomed the signing of an MoU on fighting worldwide terrorism and transnational organised crime.

Lauding Modi's statement, Turnbull said he hoped the counter-terrorism agreement as well as the two government's close cooperation on human trafficking, money laundering and other such crimes, will only serve to better ties between the two nations.

The two leaders also made a decision to deepen efforts to "deter and disrupt" human trafficking, including to ensure the return of persons, subject to verification by Indian and Australian authorities.

Before leaving for India, Mr Turnbull told a business breakfast in Port Moresby that Australia and Papua New Guinea needed to strengthen their trade and investment relationship.

Experts said Australia remained important for India, particularly in the security and maritime domain. The Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement lost steam in the post-Abbot period, but continues on the agenda, though on the back-burner.

Modi said that the Australia-India Research Fund of almost $100 million has focused on collaborative research projects in the areas such as nanotechnology, smart cities, infrastructure, agriculture and disease control.

  • Leroy Wright


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