Andrew Robb MP addresses Australia India Roundtable

10 February 2014

The Minister for Trade and Investment, the Federal Member for Goldstein, The Hon. Andrew Robb, MP addressed the Australia-India Roundtable at the Australia India Institute on Thursday.

The Australia-India Roundtable, the leading informal dialogue between the two countries, was held last week in Melbourne and Sydney.

A high-level delegation of Indian officials, think tank experts and media commentators visited Australia for the talks, led by the Secretary (East) of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs, Ambassador Anil Wadhwa.

Co-Chair, Dr C. Raja Mohan, Head of Strategic Studies and Distinguished Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation, said ‘The engagement with Australia is one of India's fastest growing and most significant bilateral partnerships and has the potential to contribute to stability and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific at a time of great uncertainty in the relations among China, Japan and the United States’.

The dialogue was organised by the Australia India Institute in partnership with the Lowy Institute and with the prominent Indian foreign policy think tank the Observer Research Foundation. It is supported by the Public Diplomacy Division of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs and the Australia India Council of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

The delegation also visited the nation’s capital, engaging in talks with senior Australian officials in Canberra as well as meeting Commonwealth Government Ministers and visiting the Australian War Memorial.

About 40 Australian officials, scholars, parliamentarians, journalists and business representatives shared views with the Indian delegation during the roundtable discussions. The talks were aimed at producing practical recommendations to advance Australia-India relations in trade and investment, education, people-to-people ties, defence and diplomatic cooperation in such frameworks as the G20 and the Indian Ocean Naval Symposium, both being chaired by Australia this year.

A report of findings from the roundtable will be released soon.