Dr Ashok Sharma has written about the increasingly close relations of India and Australia – for example, we are now the number 2 education market behind the USA and just ahead of the UK. Dr Sharma pointed to the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and the New Education Policy which should “bring the current education partnership to the next level”.
But what about other areas of trade?
We know that the increasing activity in education has many spin offs – increased tourism, professional exchanges and more.
Education might be the “trade flagship” that drags other industries into the trade mix.
But we cannot be sure.
It is time for a new national conversation about Australia-India trade, with a close examination on what blockages might exist and what steps would increase two-way trade.
India’s External Affairs Minister Dr. S. Jaishankar (pictured with Acting Prime Minister Richard Marles) came to Australia in October for the annual Foreign Ministers’ Framework Dialogue – where these matters were discussed.
The two foreign ministers discussed “accelerating and deepening economic ties, including through our Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement.”
But what is next?
Can the Australian Trade Minister, the Hon Don Farrell, bring business and education at all levels together in a national dialogue?
Remember – India is not just the second most populous nation on earth, it is also the YOUNGEST – which makes it the global growth centre. We cannot afford to miss this opportunity.
We have to find a way.