The Australia India Business Council (AIBC) has welcomed the Albanese Government’s commitment to establishing the Centre for Australia India Relations (CAIR) with an allocation of $44 million in funding.
This comes at a critical time in the relationship between the two nations, with the signing of the Australia India Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (AI ECTA) in April and negotiations progressing on a broader free trade agreement.
Ms Jodi McKay, AIBC National Chair said the Centre would become a key institution in deepening the dialogue between the two countries and working closely with business and industry to explore and capture the emerging opportunities in India Australia trade.
“Two way trade between the two countries is currently $25 billion and is forecast to grow to $45 billion within the next five years,” Ms McKay said.
“The Centre will play a key role in helping India and Australia meet those aspirations.”
According to Ms McKay, the Centre’s focus on promoting policy dialogue and strengthening industry and business links is important, but so too is engaging Australia’s rapidly growing Indian diaspora.
“AIBC has long championed business-to-business links, but also believes there must be greater emphasis on the growing India diaspora and its connection to India.”
“The Centre will provide a focus on Australia’s Indian diaspora as a “living bridge” between the two countries, which until now has been missing from Australia’s strategic approach to India,” said Ms McKay.
With funding now secured, AIBC NSW is advocating for the Centre to be established in Western Sydney, which is home to a large Indian diaspora.