The first virtual meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison is underway. This is the first time that PM Modi will be holding a “Bilateral Virtual Summit”.
“As vibrant democracies, from Commonwealth to cricket to even cuisine, our people-to-people relations are strong and the future is bright,” said PM Modi
The two leaders are likely to review the broad framework of bilateral strategic ties and explore ways to expand cooperation in areas of trade and defense.
The two countries are also expected to finalize a landmark agreement for reciprocal access to military bases for logistics support in the summit besides sealing a number of other pacts.
“The virtual summit will be an opportunity for the two leaders to review the broad framework of the relationship, in the context of growing ties between India and Australia, and to discuss their respective responses to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.
It said India and Australia have “very warm and friendly” relations which have been expanding and growing steadily. There is a 700,000 strong Indian diaspora and around 1,06,000 students studying in Australia.
The two prime ministers have already met on four occasions on the sidelines of multilateral meetings during the last one-and-half years.
Australian PM Scott Morrison says, “I wish I could be there for what has become the famous ‘Modi hug’ & share my samosas. Next time, it will have to be the Gujarati Khichdi. I will try that in the kitchen before next time we meet in person.”
It is noted that the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank has India and Australia as it’s founding members.
Watch it live – https://www.pscp.tv/w/1djGXQWLgEyJZ