India signs migration, mobility pact with Australia

New Delhi: India and Australia on Wednesday signed a migration partnership agreement aimed at making it easier for students, academics and professionals to live, study and work in each other’s countries.

The deal was signed during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ongoing visit to the country.

“Prime Minister and I are pleased to have just witnessed the exchange of the Australia-India migration and mobility partnership agreement. This arrangement will promote the exchange of students, graduates, researchers and businesspeople, expand our people to people ties and enhance cooperation in preventing people smuggling,” Australia’s Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said on Wednesday at a joint press briefing after the two leaders concluded a bilateral meeting in Sydney.

This was the sixth meeting between the two leaders since Albanese took office in May last year.

Albanese also welcomed India’s decision to open a consulate in Brisbane. This adds to India’s existing consulates in Perth, Melbourne and Sydney.

Both countries also finalized the terms of reference of an India-Australia hydrogen task force, which will report to the ministerial dialogue on the opportunities available for the two countries on green hydrogen.

“Investments like the task force will help power our industries in the future and ensure that Australia and India meet our energy targets in the interests of both our respective countries but also in support of reduction in global emissions,” Albanese said.

The two leaders also expressed optimism at the progress made in the negotiations for a comprehensive economic agreement. The conversation also revolved around defence and security, critical minerals, education and people to people ties. External affairs minister S Jaishankar met with his counterpart, Penny Wong, on Wednesday.

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