To reduce its dependence on China, India is looking to Australia, which has the largest reserves of essential minerals such as cobalt, lithium and vanadium.

At the second India-Australia virtual summit, leaders of both countries said the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine should not be a reason to divert attention from the Indo-Pacific region. Speaking to the media at the end of the summit, Foreign Secretary Harsh Shringla said Prime Minister Scott Morrison understood India’s stance on the crisis. The two leaders believed that the conflict should not be a reason to divert attention from the Indo-Pacific.

According to the foreign minister, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine played a role in talks between the two prime ministers of India and Australia, and Mr Morrison expressed his understanding for India’s stance on the issue.

In response to a question, he said that during talks between the two leaders, serious concerns were expressed about the ongoing conflict and humanitarian situation, and both leaders stressed the need for an end to hostilities and violence in Ukraine.

Line of actual control and China

The two leaders also shared their concerns about terrorism, Shringla said, and Prime Minister Modi also referred to the situation in eastern Ladakh during talks.

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PM Modi told his counterpart that “Peace and tranquility in the region is crucial for the normalization of ties with China.”

The Australian leader spoke in particular about the South China Sea and shared a detailed perspective on how he saw China and its actions in the region.

India’s stance on the Russian-Ukrainian crisis

India is the only country of the QUAD group that has not condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. In the three telephone conversations with President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Modi urged him to resolve these through dialogue and diplomacy.

Funds

The two leaders also agreed that cooperation between India’s National Investment and Infrastructure Fund and Australia’s Pension and Sovereign Fund will increase.

Why is this important?

Foreign Secretary said: “This is important because of our interests in attracting Australian investment for infrastructure development.”

India will offer the same tax benefits for the Australian Pension and Sovereign Fund here as in Australia.

Critical Minerals Pact

On Monday, the two countries agreed to strengthen cooperation in a very important area such as minerals. To reduce its dependence on China, India is looking to Australia, which has the largest reserves of essential minerals such as cobalt, lithium and vanadium. These are very important for the production of electric cars, mobile phones, satellites, solar panels and other hi-tech applications.

The Australian side unveiled investments of Aus $280 million (₹1,560 crore) to boost collaboration in areas such as clean technologies, space and innovation.

India and Australia signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Indian Khanij Bidesh India Ltd (KABIL) and the Australian Critical Minerals Facilitation Office. The MoU will create a framework for joint investment in Australian projects to mine these important minerals.

According to the foreign minister, India will have the opportunity to invest in that country’s mineral sector and also gain expertise in this field.


This post India-Australia Summit: Modi, Morrison discuss China, Indo-Pacific, Lithium and more was original published at “https://www.financialexpress.com/defence/india-australia-summit-modi-morrison-discuss-china-indo-pacific-lithium-and-much-more/2467163/”

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